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Getting paid on unpaid appraisals in NJ

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Nikolay Pavlov

Thread Starter
Sophomore Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2006
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
New Jersey
Hi all,

I was wandering if any of you (in NJ) have gone suing MBs and banks that didn't pay for the jobs they ordered.

When our company was new and green, we used to do lots of those "invoice to the lender" jobs some of which of course ended up unpaid. Now is a different story, COD period except for good old clients, but we still have some $$ to get.

We won the the first case, got a money judgement but it turns out that collecting is harder.

Has anybody done this and can give some insight (I'm talking about getting $$ back from a corporation, not an individual)?

I'm sure plenty of you guys have been or are in the same position so maybe we can have a discussion that can help many of us stick it to those deadbeats!!
 

Tamara Vargas

Sophomore Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2005
Professional Status
General Public
State
New Jersey
I have for years, used several collection agencies. Not one has ever gotten me paid on a single job. I Have sent about 100 inovices over the past 5 years to collection. I myself am considering taking the clients(mortgage companies) to court. Did I read that you have already won a judgement? How did the process work?
 

Nikolay Pavlov

Thread Starter
Sophomore Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2006
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
New Jersey
Well, we have unpaid work with several companies and individuals. The first case that I tried was against a company. The amount was $2,200 so I went to a small claims court (limit up to $3,000). Filled out a Small Claims Complaint form, had to pay $21 for the court to serve the complaint (the amount differs from county to county). The hearing was scheduled 2 months later. Went to court, the Defendant didn't show up and we won by default. I still had to present the case to the judge, showed all the invoices and stuff. Then I brought the judgment to the guy that owes us, he said he's not paying anything. Then I started figuring out how to collect. The rules are posted but are kinda written in "lawyer" language from the Victorian time, so I retained this lawyer to help me out with some details. I just mailed an Information Subpoena to the Defendant so they can disclose their account information. Still waiting for an answer, if they don't answer within 21 days I believe, somebody is getting locked up. I'll keep you posted how it goes. I think the guy will just pay because it will take him 2 days to fill out this form, it asks for tons of information.
Meanwhile, I contacted the Division of Banking. They replied pretty quickly and in a helpful manner but said that they can't enforce collection attempts, the only thing they could do is give the ******* a courtesy call on my behalf. So that was no help.
I believe that I'll be able to collect because most of our debtors are viable and liquid companies but it will take some time. The thing is that there are rules that can help us, only the first time will be hard until we see how it's really done.
When dealing with individuals, it's also not that hard because once you get a judgment, you can record it against the title of the property they own and they can't sell or mortgage it without paying.
And the most beautiful thing is that you can charge interest from the time of judgment. I'm still figuring this out though.
 

Nikolay Pavlov

Thread Starter
Sophomore Member
Joined
Jun 21, 2006
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
New Jersey
Forgot to say, once we get the Information Subpoena back with their account numbers, then we get an order from the court to seize and turn over the funds and that's that.
 

Tamara Vargas

Sophomore Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2005
Professional Status
General Public
State
New Jersey
Nikolay-
This was so helpful. I'm going to try your route with small claims. How has it ended up for you with this?
 

dobie

Senior Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2003
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
New Jersey
I have for years, used several collection agencies. Not one has ever gotten me paid on a single job. I Have sent about 100 inovices over the past 5 years to collection. I myself am considering taking the clients(mortgage companies) to court. Did I read that you have already won a judgement? How did the process work?

100 unpaid invoices!!! Were these for appraisals?

You would think after the 50th maybe you would rethink your way of doing business and ask for your money up front. Sounds like you were just asking for problems.
 
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