An Order of Attachment could help you get some, if not all, of the monies due you from a delinquent account. This is one of the strongest legal tools when it comes to debt collections in New York.
You may experience a customer closing their doors and leaving with no intention of paying you. They have probably drained all their money from their bank account. They may have also sold assets. This leaves you wondering if you will ever see your money.
The only chance to collect monies due you is to “attach” any of the debtor’s receivables, payables from their customers. This is where an Order of Attachment is a powerful next move.
The issue is time. If you begin a regular debt collection case, you will not have a judgment for at least four months. That’s the best case scenario. But in four months, the debtor will have been paid by their customers and the money collected will be gone.
You need something faster, something more aggressive to be able to capture those funds to satisfy the balance owed.
New York Courts offers a way for you to do just that. You can, without having previously filed any documents with the Court, apply for an Order of Attachment. This gives you access to the delinquent customer’s assets such as their bank account, property, receivables and the like. Obtaining an Order of Attachment depends on if you have sufficient documentation to support your application and you truly believe the customer or non-paying party is going to secrete their assets and leave you without a way to collect your money.
Here is How An Order of Attachment Works
You will need to prove to the Court that as a matter of law you are entitled to a judgment. This is sort of like a motion for summary judgment. The court will require you to show proof that the goods or services were requested, provided, payment was demanded and not made in whole or in part.
Portray confidence when you present the facts to support your position. The key aspect that will support your position is demonstrating that without attaching the monies, property or other assets to or owed to your judgment debtor, you will be left without any recovery.
Other Requirements to Be Aware Of
There are other requirements. Because you are asking the Court for a Temporary Restraining Order, restraining the delivery of the monies and other owed to the delinquent client or customer, you will need to satisfy other requirements. For example, you may be required to post a bond/undertaking. You will need to provide notice to your delinquent customer that you are seeking this relief.
Sometimes, the notice alone is enough to bring the delinquent customer to the table. I wrote in an earlier blog where the signing and service of the application for an order of attachment, to redirect monies to a creditor, motivated the delinquent customer to pay.
An Order of Attachment is not commonly used, but it should be. It’s one of several tools to help get you paid.
If you have a client closing or moving out of state and they owe you money, it is time to act quickly. Get in touch with our office and we can evaluate the potential to collect the monies due you.
I look forward to meeting you.
– Jocelyn Nager, ESQ