Suppose an unsecured debtor doesn’t pay. What’s next?

A savvy creditor should understand the nature and availability of remedies if a debtor defaults. Such knowledge is especially important to unsecured creditors, since the options upon default are relatively few and frequently unsatisfactory-why?

More often than not, the only remedy available to the unsecured creditor is to file a lawsuit, proceed to judgment (an often lengthy and expensive process), and execute against whatever property of the debtor can be found, provided that is not exempt from execution, e.g. homestead.

Here are some tips for unsecured creditors:

· Assure yourself that the customer is credit worthy.

· Get all the information you can about the debtor, especially bank accounts, employer, and ss#.

· Start your collection efforts early. American Express sends me an electronic notice 5 days before the payment is due.

· Be aware of any statutory liens that are available to you, such as laboror’s liens and UCC liens, and be prepared to use them.

(See related post, dated September 16th, 2009)

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On August 27, 2013, Gary Quinnett presented a legal seminar on commercial real estate issues. The attendees rated him "Excellent"