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How Do I Find Out If I Have Any Judgments Against Me?

Chloe Meltzer | March 11, 2024

Chloe Meltzer
Legal Expert
Chloe Meltzer, MA

Chloe Meltzer is an experienced content writer specializing in legal content creation. She holds a degree in English Literature from Arizona State University, complemented by a Master’s in Marketing from California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo.

Edited by Hannah Locklear

Hannah Locklear
Editor at SoloSuit
Hannah Locklear, BA

Hannah Locklear is SoloSuit’s Marketing and Impact Manager. With an educational background in Linguistics, Spanish, and International Development from Brigham Young University, Hannah has also worked as a legal support specialist for several years.

Summary: If you suspect you’ve been sued and have a judgment against you, try searching for it online with our handy list of state court case search tools. You can also call the court, search your mail, and check to see if your wages have been garnished to see if you have any judgments ordered against you.

Whenever you borrow money, whether it is a loan or in the form of a line of credit, you will be required to repay it. Sometimes life happens. If you are not able to pay back the money that was loaned to you, it can end up in a lawsuit.

After a successful debt lawsuit, the creditor or lender who brought forth the lawsuit may win the case when the court orders a judgment against you. Judgments are not to be taken lightly and can greatly impact your finances for years to come. The worst situation is being caught with an outstanding judgment that you are unaware of.

Finding out if there is any form of judgment against you is a great first step in sorting out your finances and getting back on track.

Learn what a judgment means for you

When a judgment is filed against you, you will usually be given a variety of notices. This means that, although it may be difficult for a judgment to be filed against you without you knowing, it is still not impossible.

Typically a Summons will be sent to you by mail, or “served” to you in person. The Summons will let you know when you need to show up in court, or the date by which you need to file a response. If you do not abide by these guidelines, then a default judgment will be entered against you. Default judgments are the last situation you want to be in and are easy to avoid, simply by responding to the Summons.

If a default judgment is granted in a debt collection case against you, the debt collector will have the right to garnish your wages or even seize your property. This is why it’s extremely important to respond to a debt lawsuit as soon as you’re notified of it.

Here’s an example of a default judgment and what it might look like (note: legal documents vary by state):

Default Judgment CA

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Find out if you have a judgment against you

There are several ways you can find out if a judgment has been ordered against you. You can call the court, check the mail, or check your bank account for wage garnishment. Below, we break down each of these methods a little further.

Call the court

If you received a summons, or you were served, and you did not appear in court, then you most likely can assume there is a judgment against you. This can be checked by simply calling the court on the summons.

Check the mail

It is also good to note that you will typically be notified when a judgment is entered against you by mail. In some cases when you have changed addresses, or mail is lost, then you may not be aware.

Look for wage garnishment

Another way you may be notified of a judgment would be through wage garnishment. This means that you may notice the creditor or a collection agency removing funds from each of your paychecks to pay off your debt.

How to look up judgments against you online

The easiest way to find out if you have been sued for a debt, and more importantly, if there are any judgments against you is to look it up online. Nearly all 50 states have a court case search tool you can use to find past and pending lawsuits against you.

All you have to do is search your name, and most court case search tools will be able to locate your lawsuit in the court records. The table below contains a link to each state’s case search tool, if available:

Check Your Case Status in All 50 States

State Case Lookup Tool
Alabama Unavailable: check county
Alaska Alaska Case Search
Arkansas Arkansas Case Search
Arizona Arizona Case Search
California Unavailable: check county list
Colorado Colorado Case Search
Connecticut Connecticut Case Search
Delaware Delaware Case Search
Florida Florida Case Search
Georgia Georgia Case Search
Hawaii Hawaii Case Search
Idaho Idaho Case Search
Illinois Illinois Case Search
Indiana Indiana Case Search
Iowa Iowa Case Search
Kansas Kansas Case Search
Kentucky Kentucky Case Search
Louisiana Unavailable: check county
Maine Maine Case Search
Maryland Maryland Case Search
Massachusetts Massachusetts Case Search
Michigan Michigan Case Search
Minnesota Minnesota Case Search
Mississippi Mississippi Case Search
Missouri Missouri Case Search
Montana Montana Case Search
Nebraska Nebraska Case Search
Nevada Unavailable: check county
New Hampshire New Hampshire Case Search
New Jersey Unavailable: check county
New Mexico New Mexico Case Search
New York New York Case Search
North Carolina North Carolina Case Search
North Dakota North Dakota Case Search
Ohio Unavailable: check county
Oklahoma Oklahoma Case Search
Oregon Oregon Case Search
Pennsylvania Pennsylvania Case Search
Rhode Island Rhode Island Case Search
South Carolina South Carolina Case Search
South Dakota South Dakota Case Search
Tennessee Tennessee Case Search
Texas Unavailable: check county list
Utah Unavailable: check county
Vermont Vermont Case Search
Virginia Virginia Case Search
Washington Washington Case Search
West Virginia Unavailable: check county
Wisconsin Wisconsin Case Search
Wyoming Wyoming Case Search

Don't search your credit report for a judgment

Although you may believe that you can check for a judgment by pulling your credit report, this is not the case. To see this, you would need to run a judgment search through a title company or go through the county recorder's office. This may show a debt, but it will not show a judgment. Most often a judgment can last up to 20 years, so finding out sooner than later is your best bet.

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How to handle a judgment

If you have found that you have a judgment against you, it is important to act fast. Judgments can mean loss of wages, money, or property. Overall it can cause you trouble when it comes to obtaining insurance, obtaining loans, or renting a house.

If you can, respond to a lawsuit before a judgment occurs. Debt collectors can often help you by coming to an agreement. Your best bet is to avoid the point of being sued altogether before it's too late. SoloSuit can help you fight off debt collectors, no matter what stage in the collections process you find yourself.

What is SoloSuit?

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You can use SoloSuit to respond to a debt lawsuit, to send letters to collectors, and even to settle a debt.

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>>Read the FastCompany article: Debt Lawsuits Are Complicated: This Website Makes Them Simpler To Navigate

>>Read the NPR story on SoloSuit. (We can help you in all 50 states.)

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Not sued yet?

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