Our client retained our office when his bank account was frozen pursuant
to a bank restraint levied against his account. Finding himself in the
same position as thousands of debtors in New York every year, he had no
idea what this restraint was from or how it had occurred. The client was
in a panic because he noticed that his account suddenly had a negative
balance overnight and he could not access any of his funds. Furthermore,
this was a joint bank account with his wife and her funds were frozen
in the account as well, the levy was for double the judgment amount and
they needed access to those funds immediately to cover their family’s expenses.
Once they retained our office, we quickly ascertained that a judgment had
been entered against our client in 2006 by the law firm of
Mel S. Harris & Associates on behalf of their client, a debt buyer called
Pinpoint Technologies, LLC. Debt buyers purchase debt from creditors at steep discounts, then pursue
or sue debtors for the entire amount along with interest and fees. We
regularly fight against these debt buyers in court and are successful
because they often have trouble establishing their actual ownership of the debt.
The amount entered in judgment here was $4,149.52, and the outstanding
balance had increased to $8,385.77 in the preceding years due to the 9%
statutory interest that accrues on all New York judgments. All the while,
our client had no idea that this judgment was entered against him or that
he was even ever sued. After reviewing the details of the case, it was
determined that our client was incarcerated at the time of the action
and was, therefore, not aware of the action and could not have been served.
Much like so many New Yorkers he was a victim of sewer service and without
his knowing, this judgment was entered against him, wreaking havoc on
his credit and stopping him from obtaining further credit or a mortgage,
had he wanted to do so.
The same day Lebedin Kofman was hired, we began negotiations with Mel S.
Harris & Associates and we were able to secure a fantastic settlement
of $1,500.00 that same day. In addition to the settlement, where the discount
amounted to 82% off of the current balance, we were able to have the judgment
vacated and our client’s bank account released quickly. This was
all accomplished the very same day that we were hired. In these situations
it is extremely important to have the judgment vacated as opposed to just
satisfied because only a vacature will actually get the judgment deleted
from a credit report. A satisfaction of judgment will change the trade
line on the report to “judgment satisfied” and the credit
score will not have the significant credit score increase people regularly
see from having a judgment completely deleted.