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In my line of work, at least once a week someone contacts me with a huge judgment that sounds too good to be true - for example, a 15 million dollar judgment against the Bank Of America.
I ask them if it was a default judgment, they always say yes. I ask what the entity did to get such a big judgment against them, the answer is usually vague. I ask who was served with the lawsuit, the answer I usually get is that "this is a private judgment based on a UCC lien". I smile, and say I do not think you have a judgment, but you can send it to me, and I will look at it.
They tell me it really is a real judgment, and when I see it I will understand. When they send it to me, I always find a UCC lien and some kind of paperwork that says, for example, "this is a sovereign-state judgment", or this is a "Admiralty", "universally recognized", or a "maritime judgment" or a "tribal judgment" or an "allodial judgment" or in a "court de jour" or "common law" or "private administrative remedy" or "ecclesiastical".
Often there is some Latin wordings, an attorney is listed, there are notary stamps, endorsements, and affirmations. Many times they claim the Admiralty court outranks US courts, and I explain that they need to "domesticate" their judgment into a US court before it can be enforced by any lawyer or enforcer I know (and I know thousands of them, and none of them will touch an Admiral or maritime judgment.
While such sets of paperwork are impressive to look, and a lot of work went into them, they are not judgments. There is no court case number, no seal of any court, no judge's signature (although sometimes a retired or former judge's signature not associated with any US-court), and the listed lawyer is not a member of any US State bar. It is not a real (enforceable) judgment because a UCC lien is just a claim, is not a valid contract, and is not court-endorsed.
A UCC lien can be obtained without any proof of wrongdoing or of a debt. One can simply fill out the paperwork and write "Joe owes me 5 million dollars" based on any case number one copies or makes up.
UCC liens are not checked for validness, they are only checked for completeness. If you fill out a UCC form with fake information, nobody checks that. However, if you forget to fill out one or more required places on a UCC form, they will reject it.
A UCC lien, especially when it lists specific items, and is accurate and based on a real judgment, can be useful in bankruptcy court, or to impair a business's ability to be sold or be financed. However, a UCC lien itself is not a judgment. Even if a UCC lien specifies a specific parcel of land, and is notarized and recorded at a county recorder, a UCC lien without an underlying judgment is like a car with no motor, it will not do anything.
A judgment is based on evidence, with an active judge or commissioner in a US court making a decision that the evidence is strong enough to make a court-endorsed decision that one entity owes money to another. A UCC lien alone is just a claim. A UCC filing without an awarded judgment by a judicial court, cannot be used as the sole basis for recovering money.
"Sovereign, maritime, international, and private UCC-based judgments" cannot be recovered unless they are first used as the basis of a lawsuit that is then won in a court to create an actual US judgment. Note that maritime law applies only for actions or causes of actions that involve vessels or causes of actions upon a body of water.
People without judgments often believe their UCC liens are stronger than regular US-court judgments. They sometimes explain their "UCC liens are against the IRS and banks, so they are guaranteed".
The first red flag is that the IRS and major banks are not often judgment debtors. Another red flag is that UCC liens are not judgments. Anything not endorsed by a US-court is usually junk or a note or claim. Even though private administrative remedies look official and seem valid, they still cannot be enforced through the courts or the Sheriffs.
A court-stamped federal or state judgment is a chance at getting money. A UCC lien is just a claim. I apologize for anyone I may have offended, it you have an international notarized UCC lien, please hire a lawyer to get it turned into a regular judgment.
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