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Lane
Lane, JD, CFP, MBA, CRPS
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 10149
Experience:  Law Degree, specialization in Tax Law and Corporate Law, CFP and MBA, Providing Financial & Tax advice since 1986
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In 2006-2008 I suffered a severe medical issue which

Customer Question

Hello, in 2006-2008 I suffered a severe medical issue which resulted in huge judgements I was unable to file bankruptcy at the time and now don't want to because it has been 10 yrs but these judgments are really holding me and my husband up from creating a better future we cannot even sell our home. We have over 200,000 in judgements that are over 10 yrs old what is your best advice for handling this.
JA: Because real estate law varies from place to place, can you tell me what state this is in?
Customer: Florida
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: yes Judgements
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: no
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  PDtax replied 2 months ago.

Hi from Just Answer. I'm PDtax, and can assist.

Expert:  PDtax replied 2 months ago.

I'm not an attorney, but I can assist.

If selling your home is your primary goal, and trying not to have to pay any of your creditors, first you need to see if you have to pay any of them.

Some of your medical bills may have been sued and judgments filed against you. I believe those judgments have a 20 year statute on collection in Florida. check your records to see if there are judgments.

If there are no judgments, Florida law might work in your favor. Creditors have, I believe, 4 years to sue for a judgment in Florida or the debt is legally uncollectible.

Florida bankruptcy law offers special relief for you. You might be able to declare bankruptcy, strip all the judgment and medical debt, and protect 100% of your Florida home (as a homestead exemption). Then, you could sell your home and not pay any of the old medical debts.

Now onto how you choose to proceed. A bankruptcy fixes everything, but if you don't want to file, or you have small judgment debt balances, you could negotiate with the judgment creditors for partial pay settlements.

Thanks for asking at Just Answer. Positive feedback is appreciated. I'm PDtax.

Expert:  PDtax replied 2 months ago.

Of course, you should seek professional advice to confirm that your preferred course of action works with your specific issues.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
This did not really answer my original question at all I gave alot of information in my question and you didn't seem to read it.
Expert:  Lane replied 2 months ago.

Hi. I am a different expert. My name's Lane. I can help here.

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TO answer the question, I'll need to know the nature of the judgments.

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Are the creditor judgments? ... as opposed to tax liens?

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If these are private creditors, then, at this point you are likely dealing with what's referred to as "time barred debt." (If you'll give me your state, I can proviide the statute of limitations)

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Not only are the creditors barred from taking any further legal action, the credit bureaus (under the fair Credit Reporting Act) must remove any advers reporting - after seven years.

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If these are tax judgments, then a completely different path must be taken AND it will MAY be impossible to remove, without undertaking an Offer in Compromise (OIC) determination of qualification for which, and execution OF, I can help .

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Please let me know the NATURE of the judgments (private creditor judgments in state court, tax debt, or both) - and your state, and we can go from there.

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Lane

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I have a law degree, (Juris Doctorate), with concentration in Tax Law, Estate law & Corporate law, an MBA, with specialization in financial accounting & tax, a BBA, and CFP & CRPS designations, as well - I’ve been providing financial, Social Security/Medicare, estate, corporate, non-profit, and tax advice, since 1986.

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Thank you ! They are all credit card judgements and a judgement from a reposssed vehicle.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I am in Florida
Expert:  Lane replied 2 months ago.

So sorry ... I didn't realize you had come back.

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If you look here, http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/statute-of-limitations-state-laws-chart-29941.html

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You'll see that, for a written contract, the statute of limitations (which is essentially all credit card, and other debt that has an agreeement) is 5 years.

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Also, under the Fair Debt Collection Practices act, it is illegal for anyone to sue, place a lien or attach any asset or income after this statute has expired.

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Finally, the credit BUREAUS (under the Fair Cfredit Reporting Act) must remove bad debt after seven years. Each of them has an online location to dispute and you can do this in writing as well ... to get them to remove.

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Collectors can continue to call ... but there is no legal standing to take any collection ACTION such as another judgment or placing new levy's or garnishments.

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Heres the dispute site for TransUnion: https://www.transunion.com/credit-disputes/dispute-your-credit

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here's the site for Experion: http://www.experian.com/disputes/main.html

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And here's equifax: https://experian.referral.equifax.com/CreditInvestigation/home.action

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And here is the contact info for all three, in case you'd ike to call and have ghem give you the mailing address for disputes (again, what you are disputing is that the advers reporting is still there after 7 years)

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Experian-1-***-***-****
www.experian.com

TransUnion-1-***-***-****
www.transunion.com

Equifax-1-***-***-****
www.equifax.com

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Finally, you'll find the statute of limitations for debt in Florida at Florida Statutues Annotated. § 95.011 et seq.

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When someone calls or when you need to reference that thisis time barred debt, cite "section 95.011 of the florida code."

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Thank you ! I'm confused though how do they continue to collect their judgement for twenty years if the agreement is five. Does this also apply if they keep selling the debt ? Sorry just trying to see where I stand I was told I could not sale or Refinance my house unless judgement was paid.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I think that stature apply to Debt not judgments. I have actual default Judgements.
Expert:  Lane replied 2 months ago.

Who is telling you that they have a lien? ... Selling the debt happens all the time when it's no longer possible to attach the asset.

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When they tell you that you still owe the debt, it's true. Whe they tell you they can garnish or take some other action, including a legal action, that's not true.

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As a matter of fact, threatening to sue for time barred debt is specifically forbidden by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. (FDCPA)

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A judgment lien in Florida will remain attached to the debtor's property (even if the property changes hands) for ten years (real estate lien) or five years (personal property lien).

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the relevant statute(s) can be found at Fla. Stat. Ann. Sections 55.202 to .205, 55.081, 55.10

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
The title company was telling me this.
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
I guess what I am saying they have already sued me and obtained the judgement they did this in 2006. The title company said the judgement coming up on title search.
Expert:  Lane replied 2 months ago.

Again, you should tell them that the relevant statutes are Fla. Stat. Ann. Sections 55.202 to .205, 55.081, 55.10

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(Real property - even if the property changes hands - for ten years (real estate lien) or five years - personal property lien).

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Not to mention that FL has a very strong homestead exemption law.

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See this: https://www.alperlaw.com/asset-protection/florida-asset-protection/homestead-exemption/