If a judgment is entered against an individual and that individual pays the judgment, either in full or in an amount the judgment creditor agrees to accept as full payment, the creditor then files a satisfaction of judgment with the court. This notice serves as a receipt for full payment and formally closes the case with the court.
Once a judgment is satisfied any wage garnishments, bank account liens or liens on an individual’s personal property are released. It is important that a satisfaction of judgment be filed since having a judgment against you does have a negative impact on your credit. You could be prevented from obtaining a new line of credit even after the debt has been paid because the judgment does not reflect that it has been satisfied. If a satisfaction of judgment is not filed, an individual may motion the court for a declaration that the judgment has been satisfied.
Additionally, if a creditor fails to file a satisfaction of judgment, an individual may have a claim against that creditor for any damages incurred because of their failure to file a satisfaction of judgment. These damages could include, but are not limited to, the inability to obtain a new line of credit that you would qualify for should the judgment be satisfied.
If a satisfaction of judgment has been filed, it is important to check your credit report and notify the three major credit reporting agencies that the judgment has been satisfied. If a creditor fails to verify that the judgment has been satisfied, it is possible that you could have a potential claim against the creditor. If you have paid a judgment and no satisfaction of judgment has been filed, you can contact our firm so that an attorney may review your situation and determine what, if any, recourse you may have against the creditor.