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A Guide to California Post-Judgment Receiverships

A post-judgment receivership is one of the methods a judgment creditor can use to enforce its judgment. The role of a post-judgment receiver is to expedite the process of satisfying the judgment. 

According to the California Code of Civil Procedure, California law provides for the implementation of a post-judgment receivership. In this guide, we will go over what exactly a post-judgment receivership is, and how it can help expedite the process of collecting on a civil judgment.

What is a Post-Judgment Receivership?

post-judgement receivership

It’s not difficult to imagine a situation in which a business or individual will not

cooperate with their creditors, and they end up owing a large amount of money that they simply won’t pay back.

Despite a creditor’s best efforts, this isn’t an incredibly rare event. Sometimes, debtors will go years without paying what they owe. This is a situation that may call for the post-judgment receivership solution.

A receiver is appointed by a judge to enforce a judgment. While judgment creditors have limited powers to collect on civil judgments, a court-appointed receiver is empowered by a court to take advantage of expansive authorities. In these cases, receivers can discover hidden assets that a judgment creditor would otherwise not know about or be able to reach.

Responsibilities of a Post-Judgment Receiver

A post-judgment receiver can recover indebted assets by:

  • Locating hidden or undiscovered funds

  • Facilitating the liquidation of a debtor’s assets, including real property

  • Obtaining bank records and other financial information

  • Finding and seizing assets swifter than a judgment creditor

Often, a court will appoint a post-judgment receiver to specifically aid in the collection of a judgment through a specific avenue (i.e. selling a particular parcel of real estate, transferring specific intellectual property or a liquor license, etc.). A post-judgment receiver is allowed (sometimes exclusively) to take judgment collection steps not accessible by judgment creditors. 

Courts increasingly want to ensure that judgment creditors have exhausted collection efforts on their judgment and need a receiver appointed for a specific reason. Post-judgment receivers have consistently been held appropriate in these two circumstances:

1.When a judgment creditor’s writ of execution does not reach certain properties, such as liquor licenses and intellectual property or trademarks.

2.When the judgment creditor can demonstrate through substantial evidence that the debtor has actively avoided collection efforts previously.

How Do Judgment Creditors Benefit from a Court-Appointed Post-Judgment Receiver?

The central responsibility of a post-judgment receiver is to effectuate the orders within a court’s judgment. Typically, the focus of the enforcement is sourcing assets of the judgment debtor in order to liquidate and satisfy the judgment creditor’s civil money judgment.  In California, post-judgment receivers have the authority to take control of and liquidate a judgment debtor’s real and personal property, which may also include collecting incoming rents, leasing the property and considering making repairs to maximize the value of the asset. 

Griswold Law’s Receivership Services

Richardson “Red” Griswold and the Griswold Law team have been appointed as post-judgment receivers countless times throughout the state of California. 

One example of Red’s work can be seen in this YouTube video, which tells how Red was appointed by a court to resolve a seventeen-year-old civil money judgment.

The judgment debtor owned real property worth in excess of $1M, but had refused to cooperate with her judgment creditor or the court until Griswold Law was appointed as the receiver.

Authorized by the court, Red hired a real estate broker to list the property for sale to satisfy the judgment. 

Griswold Law Is Ready to Serve as Receiver In Your Court Case

If you are seeking a court-appointed receiver to address an unsatisfied judgment, reach out to Griswold Law. Our team is consistently appointed by the California court system to serve as a post-judgment receiver. We enforce civil judgments every day. 

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