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Richard, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 53721
Experience:  Attorney with 29 years of experience.
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I lent someone $21,500. I have a signed contract. They have

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I lent someone $21,500. I have a signed contract. They have only paid $100 in the last three years.
They are three hours away. We live both live in NYS.
Can I file a lien on their house?
Can I file in my county or theirs. If it goes to court will I have to travel to them or them to me? Should I retain a lawyer by them or by me? What is the best way to proceed?

Welcome! My goal is to do my very best to understand your situation and to provide a full and complete answer for you.

Good afternoon. Unfortunately, unless they are willing to give you a lien voluntarily, you must first sue them on the contract and get a judgment before you can put a lien on their property, attach their bank accounts, or garnish their wages. New York has a 6 year statute of limitations so you have plenty of time to file the suit and you should do so because it gives you so many more collection options. Because of the amount involved, you can't file this in small claims court, so I would suggest you get a lawyer to help file the suit. But, the suit is not complicated, so I would find a 1-2 year lawyer to help you with this to keep the costs down. Unless your contract provides for venue and jurisdiction to be in your location, the suit would need to be filed in the borrower's location, and you would have to appear for the hearing. But, once the suit is filed and a
judgment awarded, you become a judgment creditor, and if the losing party
doesn't then pay the judgment, you can then have the sheriff serve a summons on the
losing party for a debtor examination. That forces the losing party to meet the
judgment creditor in court and answer questions under oath about the losing
party's assets. After that information
is obtained, the judgment creditor has
the power to garnish wages, attach bank accounts, and/or have the
sheriff seize other property to satisfy
the judgment.

Thank you so
much for allowing me to help you with your questions. I've done my best to provide information which
will be helpful to you.
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Richard and 3 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

i forgot to ask one more thing. They stopped paying approx. three or four years ago but out of the blue they sent a check for $100 last January. does the 6 year statute start form the last payment or when they originally defaulted on the loan. Also the fact that they sent a $100 check almost a year ago, does that help their case any? I just didn't understand why they would do that. how do you go about getting a 1-2 year lawyer?

Any payment starts the 6 year statute of limitations period over that works in your favor since the 6 years is calculated based on their most recent payment.

Regarding your question on lawyers, under my terms of service with
JustAnswer, I'm not allowed to make a specific recommendation, but I can give
you direction. You would want to either contact the NY state bar association or
one of the NY law schools in the area for a referral. I prefer the latter because they take
great pride in their graduates and will take a more personal interest in making
sure your referral is a good one because it will be a reflection of the school.

Thank you so much for the positive rating! I appreciate having had the opportunity to serve
you! If I can be of assistance to you in
the future, just look me up and I will be happy to help!

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