Our client hired us after discovering a Chase judgment for $4,772.00 on her credit report. This judgment significantly lowered her credit score, and it was preventing her from obtaining financing for a home. Often, a judgment itself can prevent a consumer from buying, selling or re-financing a home regardless of the amount of the debt. When buying or selling a home, a title search is usually produced showing whether there are any judgments or liens against the consumer. The title generally must be free and clear of any such judgments or liens for the deal to succeed. Clients, in many cases do not even know that there is a judgment against them until a credit report or title search is obtained. These judgments are good for 20 years which means they stick around and can become a serious problem for anyone who is interested in property 10-15 later.
The client wanted us to have the judgment vacated, so the judgment would be removed from the credit report and title search. We initially contacted Chase Bank to discuss vacating the judgment without wasting time in court, but the bank required a full pay off and would only satisfy the judgment, not vacate it. As a result, we filed a motion to vacate the judgment because we knew Chase would not likely contest the motion and that we would win on the law anyway. Chase had been previously sued under a class action lawsuit for deceptive practices and had ultimately decided to no longer sue consumers on defaulted accounts. We moved forward with this new strategy, and were able to have the judgment vacated and case dismissed for our client.