Judgment Enforcer or Judgment Buyer?

August 12, 2023


Q. What is the difference between a Judgment Enforcer and a Judgment Buyer?

A: A Judgment Enforcer (which could be a contingency collections lawyer or a collection agency) pays you nothing upfront, and then pays you (e.g.) 50% of whatever they recover, after they recover money from the available assets of the debtor.

A Judgment Buyer pays you a small amount (much less than 50%) up-front for your judgment, and nothing in the future. The amount paid is usually small. The more available debtor assets there are, the higher the cash value of a judgment. In no case will a cash up-front judgment buyer pay more than a small fraction of the face value of a judgment.

To sell a judgment for cash upront, first be prepared to be disapointed, see our articles about Selling Your Judgment For Cash and Why Cash Up Front Prices Are Falling.

Judgment enforcers and judgment buyers are often the same people or companies. A judgment buyer might become a judgment enforcer when there are few available debtor assets showing. A judgment enforcer might become a judgment buyer when there are substantial available debtor assets showing.

Also, nobody buys a judgment to hang on a wall or to file away. Judgments must be successfully enforced, sometimes at great expense, and there is a chance they will never be enforced, which is the reason they cannot be sold for more than a fraction of their alleged value. Some of the reasons buyers pay just pennies on the dollar for average judgments include that debtors can go bankrupt, vacate default judgments, die, be smart enough to make it a waste of time and money to try and recover a judgment against them, or move to a state where domesticating judgments is tough.

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