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Thelawman2, Lawyer
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 1185
Experience:  Attorney-at-Law
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My husband has a judgement against m old traffic accident

Customer Question

My husband has a judgement against him for an old traffic accident and has not worked in four years due to the crippling effect of having his license suspension until the judgement is paid. He fulfilled his legal obligations for the incident and has not driven since the notification. He continues to look for work but a driver's license is necessary in every job he is qualified for. I am out of work 1.5 yrs and still looking for full time employment. We can not get a loan without jobs. This has brought extreme hardship on our family. We would like to make payment arrangements with the creditor in order to reinstate the license when he is able to get a job. Are there any other options? Please help.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Traffic Law
Expert:  AttyDort replied 1 year ago.

Great question! Yes, there is something you can do.

You can petition the court that issued the judgement (I cannot tell what court this is, but speaking in general) for a payment plan monitored by the court. It is a very common request, and is usually granted.

Technically, it is a petition or motion to amend a judgement. It can be done at any time.

Most courts have a local form for exactly this request. If this is a CA case, you can find the forms at the California Judicial Council Web Site under Forms: Civil Forms: Judgement.

Or check your court's web site under forms. It is a very common request, there should be a form. If there is no form for your court, you can make the request in letter form, take it to the court clerks office and request that it be filed in person. The court clerk will give you instructions from there.

You can also go to the law library and ask the librarian for help with the request. They are familiar with it.

Most courts also have a pro bono / small claims court advisor's office that will answer these questions for free at the courthouse (even if it is not a small claims case).

Now that you know you have that option, I recommend this:

1) notify the judgement holder that you can not pay as it is now, and that you intend to petition the court for a payment plan. Give them the option to agree to it before a court petition. Get any payment play you agree to in writing.

If they refuse, then petition the court for a payment plan.

Most of the time, those requests are not opposed if the creditor knows you cannot pay in full, and/or the judge is inclined to grant the request if reasonable to promote the satisfaction of judgements.

If this is CA, and his drivers license is suspended, he can apply for a restricted license to allow driving to work. Check the DMV web site under Forms: Accidents for the restricted license application.

Questions? Let me know.

-Attorney Christopher Dort

(I assumed you were in CA)

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
For reference, we live in Pennsylvania. The judgement was at Delaware County Courthouse in Media, Pa. I have written and requested other options from the creditors and moving forward will get the forms to petition the court. Thank you for your assistance.
Expert:  Thelawman2 replied 1 year ago.

You should also be aware that in PA, your husband could also apply for a hardship/occupational license which permits a person who has a suspended license to obtain a license to use to drive for work.

These are the requirements for obtaining an occupational license:

(1) The applicant for an occupational limited license must file a petition with the department, by certified mail, setting forth in detail the need for operating a motor vehicle. This petition is called Occupational Limited License Petition (form DL-15). The petition shall include an explanation as to why the operation of a motor vehicle is essential to the petitioner’s occupation, work, trade, treatment or study. The petition shall identify the petitioner’s employer, educational institution or treatment facility, as appropriate, and shall include proof of financial responsibility covering all vehicles which the petitioner requests to be allowed to operate.
(2) The petitioner shall surrender his driver’s license in accordance with section 1540 (dealing with surrender of license).
(3) A $50 fee must be paid.
(4) Send the form, along with a check or money order, proof of insurance (copies only) and Restoration Fee if not previously paid by mail to the Department.

Expert:  Thelawman2 replied 1 year ago.

I hope this has been helpful. If so, please provide positive feedback!