+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 16
  1. #1
    seekinghelpinfl is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    13

    How can I remove a paid / satisfied judgment from my credit report?

    What is the name of your state?All legal help is much appreciated. Thank you, in advance, to all replies.

    I have paid / satisfied a judgment that was filed on 06/2004. I live in Florida and the judgment was filed in New Jersey. I paid this judgment in full on 10/2004 after first discovering it on my credit report when applying for a mortgage. In short, back in 2003 and early 2004 I was part owner of a small business. The plaintiff was a supplier that we did business with and, although we had a business account with them, I signed a personal guarantee against any unpaid amounts. The business closed in March 2004 and, as far as I knew, we had no debts to anyone. The address was no longer ours and there was no forwarding address since it was a mailbox service. I never knew of the balance owed ($530) nor was served any papers (I assume the letters were sent back or the new mailbox owner got them and hopefully sent the RTS). Without my knowledge, the claim was made and the judgment was rendered on 06/2004.

    As I said before, I discovered the judgment on 10/2004 after a mortgage broker pulled my credit report. Without hesitation, I contacted the creditor and paid for the judgment immediately. I must add that they were not much help after the fact because I had to file a Motion to Satisfy to the courts even though they agreed to send the letter of satisfaction directly (they never did).

    As of this date, only TransUnion is reporting the judgment (originated 10/2004, paid 10/2004). I have read from other posts that one could simply ask the creditor to request deletion of the report -- But even if this is true, I know the plaintiff would never do it (they did not even notify the courts of my payment even after they promised several times).

    I just learned of VACATING a judgment. But how can this be done if it is way past 180 days after I learned of the judgment? Also, I live in FLORIDA and the original judgment is in New Jersey.

    Someone please explain in detail what I can do (other than waiting another 6 years). This is adversely affecting my credit score.

    Thank you.
  2. #2
    TigerD is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Missouri - Go Tigers!
    Posts
    6,290
    I don't think I can help you, but I'd be interested to see what you find.

    Good Luck

    DC
  3. #3
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    in the ether
    Posts
    34,626
    If you paid the judgement you should have proof. Call Trans-Union and ask them where to send the proof so they will take it off.

    Vacating a judgement would be setting aside the judgement (like in you wouldn't have to pay it). If it was a legit judgement it's not getting vacated.
  4. #4
    seekinghelpinfl is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    13
    hello Justalayman:

    I guess this is a misconception many people have. Paying a judgment (also knows as Satisfying a judgment) does NOT mean the judgment can be removed / deleted from your credit report. It only means that the courts will correctly report the DATE the judgment was satisfied (paid) but it will STILL remain on your credi report for seven (7) years as allowed by law.

    I wish it were that easy, though :-(

    All comments / solutions / ideas are welcome.
  5. #5
    justalayman is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    in the ether
    Posts
    34,626
    Quote Originally Posted by seekinghelpinfl
    hello Justalayman:

    I guess this is a misconception many people have. Paying a judgment (also knows as Satisfying a judgment) does NOT mean the judgment can be removed / deleted from your credit report. It only means that the courts will correctly report the DATE the judgment was satisfied (paid) but it will STILL remain on your credi report for seven (7) years as allowed by law.

    I wish it were that easy, though :-(

    All comments / solutions / ideas are welcome.
    Understand and agree....same for bankruptcy, poor payment history etc.
    Even after corrected.....it's still there, just indicated as to current status
  6. #6
    Chien is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,552
    OP - It's hypothetically possible to accomplish what you wish, but probably not for you in light of the facts posted. You may be stuck with the answers you've received.

    To do it, you need to get rid of the case as well as the judgment, and for that you need the judgment creditor's cooperation. You don't feel that you can get that, and so you may be stuck with the CRA's record.

    DC will understand, because eliminating all record makes a great inducement for effecting payment. Once the judgment was paid, litigants enter into a Stipulation to Vacate the Judgment, Reinstate the Case and Dismiss with Prejudice. Parties to litigation can do many things by mutual agreement, and this is one. The court doesn't care one way or another, but this Stipulation would accomplish what you want. It's just that it's done by agreement.

    The Stipulation says (1) the judgment never happened and we're re-activating this case to let the defendant dispute the claim BUT, (2) at the same time, we're dismissing the case with no right to re-file and as if it never happened. It's like a time machine that takes everyone back to the day before the case started.

    Once the case AND the judgment are gone, the CRA record has no basis. If only the case is gone (dismissed), the judgment still stays, and the consequences of that have been explained. If you had the opportunity and ability to vacate the judgment, that takes you back to the day after the case started and gives you a chance to re-litigate the claim. The process may sound involved but it's actually simple. It's just that you haven't got a cooperative creditor. Get that and you have a solution.

    Oh yes, you needn't reconcile yourself to the record staying for 7 years from '04. That's the maximum time. CRAs also use their own internal weighting systems to purge records in less than the maximum, but a judgment will stay there for awhile (years, even if less than 7).
    Last edited by Chien; 12-14-2005 at 04:29 AM.
  7. #7
    seekinghelpinfl is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    13
    Hello Chien,

    Thank you for the post. Your advice is very interesting. But, as you said, it may not be relevant to my case because I already paid / satisfied the judgment back in 10/2004. The plaintiff has no incentive to do what you say (and past History with them tells me they won't especially now that they have been paid).

    You said sometimes courts have their own time clock of reporting and that it could be less than the allowed 7 years? Is there any way of finding out what that is by asking the courts? Anything i could do to speed it up :-).

    If anyone has any advice that can specifically help me with my case, then please reply.

    BASIC RECAP: I am in FLORIDA, judgment Filed in NEW JERSEY on 06/2004. I paid the judgment in full (around $520) on 10/2004 when I first dicovered it on a credit report. I was never served nor knew about the debt until that point. Only one of the three credit reports is reporting the debt -- TransUnion correctly shows the judgment as filed on 06/2004 and paid since 10/2004.

    How can I remove it from my TRANSUNION credit report?

    thank you.
  8. #8
    Chien is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,552
    OP - I'm sorry that it already appeared from your post that you might not be able to use that approach but, given the statements that had been made about vacating judgment, I wanted you to be aware of the procedural possibility, if the opportunity arose, and to be aware that "it will STILL remain on your credi report for seven (7) years as allowed by law" isn't necessarily true.

    I didn't say that the courts have their own timetable for reporting. Courts cannot and do not report. Please be clear on that. CRAs "collect" public records, including court records.

    I said that CRAs have their own internal weighting. I couldn't tell you the criteria currently used by each one. I'm doubtful any would be acknowledged. You should simply recognize that it exists. Think of it in terms of "customer value". Imagine that you're a CRA. You traffic in millions of records each day/week/month. You store those records in huge databases. You can keep them all for the maximum time permitted by law, but you also have the associated maintenace and compliance costs.

    Now imagine that one record is of a $40 bounced check written 5 years ago and another is of a $40,000 loan default that's 5 years old and each one is the only record pertaining to a particular consumer. Is it likley that a current credit grantor, mortgage underwriter etc. is going to care about the check today? Probably not. Will they care about the loan default? Probably. Could your databases get very, very large, if you maintained all records for the maximum permitted by law? Definitely, and you have operating costs for even the "unimportant records". So they drop off.

    One thing that you can do to "help" this process, OP, is to "dispute" the record (even if it's a public record). You can require TU to maintain your "sum**** statement" as part of the record. That increases the record size. You can request your record as often as legally permissible and you can ask to revise your sum**** (the first is your right and the second is discretionary). You can do things that make keeping that record a pain in the a**. If it will fall off, that hastens the time. Companies that advertise on bus bench backs to "clear your credit", rely on that. Otherwise, they can't do anything that you can't do and/or that won't happen anyway.
  9. #9
    Debt Guy is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    2,341
    Seek

    The courts do not report to the credit reporting agencies.

    The judgment is a public record and the CRA merely picks it up. The court does not do anything. Each CRA has their own internal guidelines for how long they report -- federal law says that negative items may only be reported for a defined maximum period of time. The CRA can report for less time if they wish.

    In my experience, CRAs will not remove a item that is accurate but negative. Remember, they work for creditors -- not consumers. Their view is that it was real and it happened and creditors (their clients) have the right to know so that they can make intelligent decisions. From a business point of view, CRAs could literally destroy their business if their clients felt like to many accurate but negative items were removed. Again, creditors use credit reports to assess the risk of loss -- an inaccurate report increases their risk of loss in ways that they cannot plan for. I think the CRA's concern for their own business and income stream is truly the reason that CRAs are so difficult to deal with even when you are trying to delete an item that is inaccurate. They absolutely hate to delete data.

    Is this judgment still causing you a problem with your mortgage app? If so, your best strategy would be to write a letter that explains what happened and that you took care of it immediately upon learning of the situation. Sometimes that will convince the underwriter to cut you some slack.

    I think the explanation from Chien was exactly accurate. In hindsight, you would have had some leverage to get to a mutually agreed vacation before you paid money.

    If this is worth the money, you might think about approaching the judgment creditor and offering to pay again in order to get the mutually agreed vacation. The success of that approach will hinge on which weights most -- more money in their pocket or their desire to cause you pain.
  10. #10
    seekinghelpinfl is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    13
    Hello Chien,

    I apologize or my innexperience with your details and acronyms. I would also like to thank you for posting your great comments / advice. I have a few questions.

    (1) You typed, "One thing that you can do to "help" this process, OP, is to "dispute" the record (even if it's a public record). You can require TU to maintain your "sum**** statement" as part of the record. That increases the record size. You can request your record as often as legally permissible and you can ask to revise your sum**** (the first is your right and the second is discretionary). You can do things that make keeping that record a pain in the a**. If it will fall off, that hastens the time. Companies that advertise on bus bench backs to "clear your credit", rely on that. Otherwise, they can't do anything that you can't do and/or that won't happen anyway."

    Could you please explain in detail what "sum**** statement" means? What does it entail and how should I word it when requesting to revise it from TransUnion?

    Could you please explain how "business that advertise on bus benches" rely on this? I understand that requesting this sum**** frequently may make the reporting of the judgment a pain in the ass for TU, but exactly how is this done? Is it done on a mothly basis (at least) and is it done with a combination of requesting the item to be removed OR do you first request the sum*** one month, wait 30 days then request the item to be removed, wait another 30 days and request a revise and so on until the item is gone? If you would be so kind, please detail the wordage and steps needed to accomplish this.

    (2) I figured out CRA stands for Credit Reporting Agency, but what des OP stand for?

    Thank you for all your help. I am sure others with similar issues are thankful as well when reading this thread.
  11. #11
    seekinghelpinfl is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    13
    Hello Debt Guy,

    Thank you fro your response as well. Regarding your comment:

    "If this is worth the money, you might think about approaching the judgment creditor and offering to pay again in order to get the mutually agreed vacation. The success of that approach will hinge on which weights most -- more money in their pocket or their desire to cause you pain"

    Can you tell me in detail how I can approach the plaintiff with this request? I will first try to ask them to do it in the name of the Holiday Spirit :-) but if that does not work, maybe a sum that i will have to pay them will be agreeable. Would I have to request a form from the courts (mutually agreed vacation) and/or how should I word my request / letter to them. Before paying the plaintiff a penny (assuming they want payment) what should I make sure they sign? Should I make sure i have their signed agreement to vacate this judgment before paying them? What should it read as OR is it a specific form from the courts? Also, in th eoriginal court papers th ePlainiff was "Company ABC / owner John Smith" ... Do I have to make sure the agreement is signed by the owner or would a signature by a representative from Company ABC (maybe in their letterhead) referencing the court case/judgment # be sufficient? What should I have in my hands before i can be completely secure to send them a payment (assuming they want one?

    Once again, thank you.
  12. #12
    Debt Guy is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    2,341
    Chien

    did not mean to post over top you -- apparently we were both typing and composing at the same time
  13. #13
    Debt Guy is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    2,341
    OK. I've only done this once and it was a peaceful and cooperative situation.

    Since the procedures in every state are different, I think you will need an attorney to help. The documents need to conform to what the court wants to see.

    I suggest the following set of steps:

    1. Approach the judgment creditor. Offer x dollars if they will consent to the vacation of the judgment. Personally, I would forget the "spirit of the holiday stuff" and just keep it business. Tell them you will deliver the cashier's check when they have signed the necessary documents to vacate the judgment, reopen the lawsuit and then to dismiss the lawsuit with prejudice.

    2. Find a local attorney in NJ. Tell them the deal and tell them it is their job to prepare all the necessary documents to do what Chien described. It will be several steps of documents.

    3. Present the agreements and documents to the judgment creditor to sign. Give them their check. Documents go back to the attorney to be filed and monitored with the court.

    4. Eventually, you will receive from the court a document that essentially says the original lawsuit has been dismissed. You then send a copy of that document to the CRA.

    What this all means is that the judgment never happened and to report the judgment would be a disputable (and actionable) error.

    Make sense?

    By the way, "OP" means Original Poster -- the person who started the conversation.
  14. #14
    Chien is offline Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,552
    I agree with Debt Guy and think his comments represent the fastest and surest way for you to get relief. You can do other things, but consider those first. I too thought of offering payment for cooperation. I decided that was leading you too far into terra incognita, but I’m glad that he said it. If you’re negotiating a mortgage and a change in your FICO means a half point up or down over 30 years, it’s worth considering. However, I’d start by offering something much less than a full second payment. Its “found money” for the creditor and you can always offer more.

    The other thing that he suggests is basically building/rebuilding a credit profile with the assistance of your credit grantors. If you can’t get rid of the bad tradeline, let creditors know it exists, and the reason and the prompt action that you took to mitigate the effect. They’re likely to cut you some slack. Use it to build a new, pristine record.

    As to what I mentioned, first understand that I was suggesting your “7-year record” could drop off in 3, 4, 5 years, not next week. That said, the FCRA gives you the right to have your own “version of events” included in your file. Read the Act at Sect. 611(b)-(c). [URL]http://www.ftc.gov/os/statutes/fcra.htm[/URL] The right applies when a record is disputed by the consumer and yours is essentially beyond dispute. But, to deny the right, the CRA must decide that a proposed statement is “frivolous and irrelevant”. I’ve seldom seen a CRA be that brave and the conservative position is to include the statement. I’m guessing something like “Required to pay court, because creditor ignored statutory responsibility.” would get in. If it does get in, it gets included in every report that goes out thereafter.

    About the “bus bench” companies? They’re just hammering the CRAs and working numbers. If a consumer has 10 black marks on a credit history and 4 drop off in the face of repeated demands for verification, the “credit company” has made a significant improvement (even if the record still sucks), but it hasn’t done anything the consumer couldn’t do. In the case of a single black mark that’s also a verifiable public record, they’d go 0 for 1 for you. I was just saying that the credit improvement companies are a lot of hype and little else.

    Before you try to get rid of the judgment by Stipulation, check with the court and make sure it will be accepted. The court won’t tell you how to do it, but it will tell you if you can do it. If you can, then I agree that it would be helpful to have an attorney because one court appearance may be necessary. Your state may be different, but I don’t think much paperwork should be required. I’ve done it many times and, in my state, all that was required was a signed a Stipulation that read something like this:
    The undersigned parties to the instant action stipulate and agree that the judgment entered herein on December 14, 2005 in favor of Plaintiff ACME, INC. and against Defendant(s) seekinghelpinfl shall be and is vacated. We further agree and stipulate that the above-referenced action shall be re-instated to the court's active list and forthwith dismissed with prejudice.
    If you're successful, get a conformed copy and send it to TU, with a letter requesting removal of the record.

    BTW - If it's any consolation, I first thought OP stood for Out Patient - seemed sensible to me.
    Last edited by Chien; 12-14-2005 at 02:55 PM.
  15. #15
    fotik is offline Junior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    10

    Motion to Vacate a satisifed judgment under RCP 60(b)(5)

    Hello,

    I am in a similar situation to the poster who was seeking advice a few years ago.

    I saw very valuable information posted by Chien among others, and am looking for help.

    I was involved in a litigation (pro-se) and lost. A judgment has been entered against me. I was not successful in negotiating with the plaintif to vacate the judgment in exchange for and additional sum of money.

    I would like to satisfy (pay) the judgment and then motion the court under MA RCP 60(b)(5) to vacate the satisfied judgement.

    For reference the relevant portion of the rule is quoted below. I am looking for advice on how to make my motion stronger, as this is an area where the Courts seem to have a bit of discretion.

    Any help is greatly appreciated.


    Rule 60 (b): "On motion and upon such terms as are just, the court may relieve a party or his legal representative from a final judgment, order, or proceeding for the following reasons: (1) ...; (5) the judgment has been satisfied, released, or discharged..."

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-10-2008, 10:06 PM
  2. Remove a paid/satisfied judgement
    By mmcleod36 in forum Debt Collections
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 07-23-2005, 11:59 PM
  3. Need to remove something on credit report
    By Ameliaf in forum Banking & Credit Cards
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 03-06-2004, 06:06 PM
  4. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-29-2004, 09:20 AM
  5. a credit agency has put a false claim on my credit report and will not remove it!
    By naive02 in forum Consumer Contracts, Guarantees and Warranties
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 07-16-2002, 10:25 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

© 1995-2012 Advice Company, All Rights Reserved

FreeAdvice® has been providing millions of consumers with outstanding advice, free, since 1995. While not a substitute for personal advice from a licensed professional, it is available AS IS, subject to our Disclaimer and Terms & Conditions Of Use.