If you negotiate a post judgment settlement agreement, you will do
well to take the right stance with your judgment debtor. If you waiver
in this, it decreases the odds of completely collecting your judgment
money as scheduled.
The stance that you need to take concerning your
post judgment settlement agreement is to be absolutely firm with
your debtor. Be sure that there is no misunderstanding in the judgment
debtor’s mind about your expectations of complete and timely
adherence to all of the terms of the agreement. Never give the other
party any hint that you will tolerate anything less than what the
settlement agreement states. The first time that your adversary
gets the feeling that he can stray from the precise terms of the
agreement without suffering any consequences, we can almost guarantee
that he will soon test you to find out if his feelings are valid.
You won’t like facing this situation!
Because of our experiences with judgment debtors
and post judgment settlement agreements, we can confidently offer
you this opinion. When you commit your agreement to written form,
be sure to include verbiage which clarifies the fact that failure
by the debtor to adhere to all of the terms of the agreement will
automatically result in specific consequences.
The specific consequences may be anything that is
lawful and which both parties are willing to accept as part of the
written settlement agreement. A typical example would be a situation
where a discount of judgment interest is a part of the agreement.
If the judgment debtor fails to meet a judgment payment deadline,
the discount of interest would be disallowed.
Consequences that are “very” real and
especially consequences that hit the debtor “in the pocketbook”
will go a long way to help you get all of your settlement payments
and get them on time as agreed. You can be creative in constructing
specific consequences, but definitely be clear and firm.
In every communication with your judgment debtor
reaffirm your expectation that the precise terms of the post judgment
settlement agreement must be adhered to.
Here’s hoping you get all that your judgment