Enforcing a Court Judgment – how do I get paid?
December 08, 2015
If you have obtained a Judgment from the Courts but have still not received payment from the debtor there are a number of options available to you to enforce the Judgment.
Judgments can be registered in the Central Office of the High Court. This means that the judgment will be noted in various trade gazettes, for example, Stubbs Gazette. The threat of the prospect of such publicity can be a good way of inducing payment. However, you as the creditor may not wish to have your name appear in the Gazette.
2. The Sheriff
Each county in Ireland has a Sheriff who is a civil servant and whose responsibility is to seize and sell goods belonging to debtors in the discharge of debt. There can be long delays in this process and often the Sheriff can decide that the debtor has no goods worth seizing and selling. The Sheriff may also seize leasehold interest in property. The Sheriff will not seize the tools of trade, or essential household items.
A Garnishee Order is an effective legal enforcement option, although this is dependent on whether you are aware of any monies due, but not yet paid. In such circumstances, you can apply to Court for a Garnishee Order, directing that such monies are paid by the third party directly to you. Timing is important so that the third parties are advised of the Garnishee Order before the monies are paid.
4. Winding up of a Limited Company
To pursue the repayment of a debt from a limited company another option open is to wind-up the company. Whilst the costs of bringing this action are recoverable in priority out of the assets of the company, if there are no assets available, you would be exposed in this regard.
5. Judgment Mortgage
It is possible to register the Judgment as a mortgage against a property owned by the debtor. This does not have any immediate effect and only becomes useful when the debtor decides to sell. The Judgment becomes similar a regular mortgage.