Collection Attorneys Enforce Judgements

You’ve succeeded in winning your case against a debtor, and now you’re wondering if you need to hire a commercial collections attorney to enforce a judgment. The short answer, of course, is yes, but the long answer involves a lot more than a simple “yes” or “no.”

Here, then, is a list of best practices involving hiring a commercial collections attorney to enforce a judgement:

  • In order for you to collect on a judgement, you need to find assets to latch onto. Only an experienced commercial collections attorney can locate, and ultimately garnish, these assets.
  • Judgements that need to be collected from an entity outside of Massachusetts need to be handled by an experienced commercial collections attorney, who will know the finer points of dealing with the laws of different states.
  • Do you know what ex parte relief means? It means that you, as the creditor, can obtain the funds that are owed to you without notice. Only an experienced commercial collections attorney, however, will be able to decide the best method of obtaining said ex parte relief.

We are a Massachusetts law firm. Our attorneys work with businesses of all sizes in collecting debts that are owed to them. For more information about us and our services, contact us today and let us show you what we can do for you.

Five advantages to hiring an Experienced Commercial Collections Attorney

The world of business is extremely chaotic, and it is difficult to get paid in a timely manner. There are many reasons why it is a struggle to collect on debts. If you are struggling to collect on your debts, then it is advantageous to hire an experienced commercial collections attorney. There are several critical advantages to hiring an experienced commercial collections attorney.

  1. Representation in court: Debt collection agencies can make numerous promises, but one thing that they cannot do is to file suit and to represent you in court. In some cases, you will have to sue in order to recover your money, and having an experienced commercial collections attorney on your side will ensure that you have the proper representation in court.
  2. Get your money faster: An experienced collections attorney will get you results faster. Most people will make payment quickly when they face a lawsuit. You need your money quickly, so hire an experienced collections attorney and collect your money.
  3. Ability to garnish wages: An experienced collections attorney will do everything they can to recover your money. They can have a court order placed to garnish wages and take other steps to recover your debt. This is a major advantage as it ensures that you will get your money.
  4. Having knowledge and experience on your side: An experienced commercial collections attorney will have years of training and experience in the field. Having this knowledge and experience on your side is critical to ensuring that you receive payment for your debt.
  5. Having strong negotiation skills on your side: Sometimes debt collections go into a settlement phase. When this happens, it is absolutely critical that you have a skilled negotiator on your side. An experienced commercial collections attorney will have the skills necessary to get you the best possible settlement.

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How Small Businesses Can Benefit from an Experienced Debt Collections Attorney

Small business owners play many roles. The smaller the company is, the more hats the owner wears. When customers are late with paying bills, or don’t pay at all, small business owners can face a cash flow crunch, making business collections even more important. When your profit margin is compromised, the tendency is to go with the least expensive alternative possible. Yet engaging the services of collection agency may cost more money in the long run when the entity that owes money repeatedly disregards collection agency calls.

Business debtors generally fall into three distinct categories:

  • Those with financial difficulties who want to pay but are having genuine difficulties
  • Those who delay or juggle payments for any number of reasons
  • Those who try to avoid paying at all costs

Most experts agree that you’ll have success with customers that fall into the first two categories. They’ll eventually pay, but sometimes eventually is not good enough. [Read more…]

When to Work With Debtor vs. File Suit

Every business owner has heard promises that the check’s in the mail from their delinquent accounts. This oft repeated line and a host of other excuses that may or may not be more believable are common when accounts are past due. How does a business owner know when to accept the delay and when to insist on immediate payment by threatening to file suit? Experienced Collections attorneys are a good source to consult in these circumstances.

One of the first things an attorney will do is check the court dockets and see if other actions are pending against your debtor customer. Once your customer gets involved in collections actions, you need to file too since whatever assets are available will get snapped up. An experienced collection Attorney can often sense when a company is going to file bankruptcy and will advise a lawsuit rather than payment plan which will be subject to avoidance by the Bankruptcy Trustee. [Read more…]

Countering Defenses Raised in Business Collections Suits

Business Collections cases are usually open and shut when it comes to liability. Often defendants don’t even bother answering the complaint and let a default judgment get entered. While this certainly makes things easier and speeds up the process, plaintiffs can’t count on all debtors conceding a case. To head off potential defenses and protect its claims, a business should follow these simple steps:

1. Insist on written Purchase Orders. When the terms of the transaction are in writing, debtors will have a hard time arguing over price, quantity or warranty terms. Many transactions are subject to the Uniform Commercial Code which requires written documentation. The contract should contain language that merges all prior terms discussed into the purchase order.

2. Implement quality control and inspection. Companies that routinely check all orders and document their process can prove items were free from damage when shipped. [Read more…]

Massachusetts Commercial Collection Attorneys

If you have a judgment against a company who owes you money, you will need the help of an experienced commercial collections attorney to enforce the judgment. Here is a list of reasons why you will need legal help to enforce your judgment:

  • Your judgment may not be as “cut and dry” as you think. If your judgment is against a company in another state — or, even more so, in another country — you won’t have the legal wherewithal to chase down the debtor without the assistance of an experienced attorney.
  • Your debtor may try evasive tactics to avoid paying what is owed. Your debtor may ignore the proceedings, evade service of process, and/or hide their assets. An experienced attorney will be able to handle each of these challenges for you, and help you recover the money you are owed.
    You may need to obtain ex parte (without notice) relief against your debtor. You won’t know how to do that without the help of an experienced commercial collections attorney.
  • In the “collection world”, the only way an Attorney is going to be successful in collecting the client’s debt is to be aggressive, and to let the debtor know that unless they file for bankruptcy the debt will be collected.

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Business Collections and the Satisfaction of Judgments

Some collection efforts are straightforward and once the Court enters a judgment, the creditor’s attorney can attempt to garnish (attach) bank accounts, or place liens on vehicles or real property to satisfy the debt. Sheriff’s deputies will execute a recorded judgment and seize whatever assets it finds which belong to the debtor, only if your attorney knows what to do. These are then sold with proceeds applied to the outstanding debt and costs incurred in collection. Business collections aren’t always that easy though. Often there are insufficient assets on the debtor business’ premises to seize and convert into cash. In these situations the help of an experienced collections attorney is necessary to satisfy your judgment.

As businesses get into financial trouble, they may seek to shelter tangible assets by diverting them to relatives or sending them out of state. They may also rely on multiple bank accounts with the majority of funds being kept in an institution beyond the reach of their own state. All these transactions leave a paper trail, so it’s just a matter of some hard-nosed discovery and persistence to track them down. [Read more…]

Build a Relationship with an Experienced Collection Attorney

Does your business have a collection attorney? If so, are collections the attorney’s primary area of the law? Many business owners don’t think about contacting a lawyer until an account is seriously past due. This is problematic for several reasons. Once a debtor stops paying your bills in the ordinary course of business it’s likely other suppliers are getting shorted too. If you wait too long to take action, your company may just have to stand in line behind other businesses that have already gotten judgments and are aggressively pursuing collection of their debts.

By informing your collections lawyer of a problematic account early on, you can preserve all options for making sure your business gets paid. Attorneys can check to see if there are pending actions already on file, assess the amount of debt suspected and make an educated guess about whether a bankruptcy filing is imminent. Knowing where things stand will help your business develop a game plan. [Read more…]

Find Your Business Collection Attorney in Massachusetts

For most businesses, extending credit to commercial clients is a typical business practice. Allowing customers to pay on net 30, net 60 or other agreed upon payment terms, not only makes your services more appealing, it also makes them more affordable for customers who must reconcile payments with corporate accounting cycles.

Normally, the practice works well and customers resolve payment before or by the agreed upon payment dates. However, there are instances where it becomes clear that customers will not meet the terms of your payment agreements. Whether this is due to inability to pay, contract disputes or willful deception, these cases require additional steps beyond sending payment notices. For these accounts, it may be time to consider hiring an experienced collection attorney. [Read more…]

Collection Attorneys and the Contingent Fee Agreement

When seeking out a commercial collections attorney, one thing to consider is the fees the firm charges to collect your business’ past due accounts. The worst feeling in the world is to throw good money after bad and find your balance sheet bleeding red ink due to fees charged by a law firm or collection agency. That’s where the contingent fee agreement comes into play. No attorney fees are due unless money is collected.

Massachusetts has a specific statue which governs contingency fee agreements. One of the main requirements is that the agreement be in writing and the contingency on which the fee is based must be clearly stated. Fees can’t be excessive based on the service rendered. Also, there are certain situations where contingency agreements can’t be used as doing so would be against public policy. Attorneys can’t use them in child custody cases for example. [Read more…]