If you get into an accident, such as a car crash, and file a personal injury lawsuit to pursue financial compensation for your injuries and bills, you may receive a judgment award from the courts. This is a financial award granted to you for the financial and emotional losses you suffered because of the defendant’s wrongful or negligent acts. After you sign the liability release waiver, the judgment is enforced for five years. If the judgment is not renewed or executed, it can become dormant – meaning the defendant is no longer responsible for any additional money owed.
About Judgments and Liens
If you win a personal injury lawsuit, you may assume that the money won is guaranteed. Until the defendant pays you the sum required, however, there is still a chance that you won’t see some or all of the judgment awarded to you for your injuries. In most cases, a defendant’s insurance company will send a check for the full judgment amount within two weeks of the conclusion of your lawsuit. If the defendant does not have enough insurance coverage, however, or goes bankrupt, there may be a delay in your financial recovery.
One way to get a defendant to pay the money owed is by placing a lien against his or her assets or property. A judgment lien is a legal claim to the debtor’s property to make sure that the creditor gets what he or she is owed. If the debtor does not pay the judgment, the lien will seize the defendant’s assets to pay. The creditor will have the right to sell the debtor’s property involved in the lien and pay the judgment using any proceeds.
Judgments Last Five Years in Kansas
According to Kansas Office of Revisor of Statutes Section 60-2403, a judgment is released after five years. This is half the amount of time that a judgment in Missouri is valid (10 years). This means that unless the judgment is renewed by the courts, after five years, it will cease to operate as a lien against the defendant’s estate. In other words, the defendant is no longer responsible for paying off any amount remaining on the judgment.
However, if you file a motion for revivor as the plaintiff within two years of the judgment becoming dormant in Kansas, the courts may opt to revive the judgment and continue to hold the defendant financially accountable for the remaining amount owed. Reviving the judgment will also reinstate any liens that were previously held against the defendant to collect on your personal injury lawsuit judgment.
If you don’t file this motion within two years, however, or if there is a reason why the courts choose not to revive the judgment, you may miss out on the remaining amount owed. If a judgment remains dormant for a period of two years, a judge must release the judgment if the defendant requests the judge to do so. The defendant in this situation will no longer be liable for any remaining amount owed to the plaintiff.
When to Hire a Personal Injury Attorney
It is not enough to have been injured by another person’s careless or reckless actions; you must also make sure that the defendant has the resources to pay out a judgment before you bring a personal injury cause of action in Kansas. A personal injury attorney in Kansas City can investigate the defendant to find out whether he or she has the means to pay for a settlement or judgment award before you file. That way, your attorney can let you know if it’s worthwhile to pursue a claim.
Your attorney can also search for third parties with the money or insurance coverage to pay for your damages. If you receive a judgment and it is not fully paid within five years, a lawyer can help you file the paperwork to request a revivor within the two-year deadline. A personal injury attorney in Kansas City can help you with every aspect of your claim, including getting paid after you receive a judgment. Contact an attorney today for more information.