Changing Judgment Agreements?

August 9, 2023


Q. My lawyer has reviewed the Judgment enforcer’s purchase agreement and has revised it to be more fair, with a time limit, no third-parties allowed, proof of insurance and licensing, and monthly accounting reports. Also I would keep an interest in my judgment to protect me, and 25% as what you get to keep, 75% for what I keep, and my lawyer’s right to review and monitor the Judgment enforcer’s performance. Why wont the judgment enforcer compromise?

A: The contract your lawyer wishes to change is a time-proven standard used in your state. Of course any changes your lawyer proposes are welcome for discussion, but when the whole contact is re-written to keep your lawyer involved, the judgment enforcer will probably lose interest in recovering your judgment.

JudgmentBuy refers judgments in the best possible way for the best possible results.

The overwhelming majority of judgment enforcers will have nothing to do with a lawyer changing their standard purchase agreements. One reason is that it is too hard to keep track of custom agreement changes.

Another reason is that having time limits, restrictions, and supervision by a lawyer is too close to asking a judgment enforcer to work for you or your lawyer.

JEs (who are not lawyers) do not work for you, they must own your judgment outright before doing any enforcement. If you retain any interest in your judgment, a Judgment Enforcer would be working for you, which they cannot do for any legal matters.

What your lawyer did to the judgment enforcers purchase contract might be too close to asking the JE to perform the Unauthorized Practice of Law (UPL).

Simply put, UPL is when one performs legal services or gives legal advice when they are not a lawyer. If one enforces a judgment as per your lawyer’s instructions, and does what your lawyer says, and reports their progress to your lawyer, they are working for your lawyer.

UPL is when you prepare legal paperwork for someone else, represent someone else, or give the appearance you are a lawyer when you are not. Letting someone think you are a lawyer is not a good idea, unless you are a lawyer.

Charges of UPL are not common – but the ramifications on the industry are so severe, we all need to take care to not even hint of doing legal work for others.

Agreeing in writing to do what your lawyer says, or having to get an OK from your lawyer before taking any actions, is too close to working for, or representing another person.

The agreement the judgment enforcer gives you has been time-tested and reviewed many times by many peers, including lawyers. Asking your lawyer to modify and approve a judgment enforcer’s agreement might mean future potential headaches.

It is a good idea to have your lawyer review any documents you sign. However, changing the documents used by judgment enforcers is another matter.

A judgment is not like a purchase of a car or a house, it is the 100% purchase of the rights to enforce a judgment. Note you are not assigning your financial or fiduciary rights to the judgment – only your rights to enforce it.

We understand some people cannot accept assigning their judgment to a judgment enforcer. If you cannot accept assigning your judgment, you may need to find or pay for a lawyer. JudgmentBuy can refer you to the best collections lawyer or agency for your judgment, so that you can retain ownership of your judgment while the lawyer or agency works on your behalf. (See our Contingency Attorneys article.)

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