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How to Enforce Foreign Judgments in Massachusetts

How to Enforce Foreign Judgments in Massachusetts

When it comes to the law, unless you’re a lawyer, things can get very complicated very quickly. Keeping that in mind, the following lines are going to answer some of the most common questions that people have regarding foreign judgments and how to enforce foreign judgments in Massachusetts.

What is a Foreign Judgment?

Before we begin, let’s take a quick look at what foreign judgments are and why they are so important. In the US, a foreign judgment is either a domestic judgment from any of the other states or an international judgment, which means, a judgment that’s been made in another country. When it comes to domestic judgments, they are covered by a ‘Full Faith and Credit’ language that’s under Article IV, Section 1 of the Constitution of the United States. While forty-seven of the fifty states in the US have enacted the Uniform Enforcement of the Foreign Judgment Act, which basically identifies the requirements and procedures that go into the enforcement of a domestic foreign judgment, Massachusetts has not.  On the other hand, when it comes to international judgments, they are mainly governed by a principle of comity and by various treaties, which is why you need a qualified collections lawyer such as, Alan M. Cohen by your side to make sure you get paid.

Needless to say, any international judgment comes along with an array of complexities that need a qualified collections lawyer to help you navigate through so that you can get the money that’s owed to you. If you have managed to obtain a judgment in some other state (other than Massachusetts) or another country, and the debtor’s assets are located in Massachusetts, then chances are that unless you domesticate your judgment in Massachusetts  you won’t be able to enforce what your jurisdiction has granted under law. That said it doesn’t really matter where you reside, as long as you have an experienced and qualified foreign judgment collections lawyer such as Alan M. Cohen by your side, to guide you every step along the way to maximize your ability to collect your accounts receivables as soon as possible. 

Domesticating a Foreign Judgment

When it comes to domesticating a foreign judgment, residents of Massachusetts are in luck. This is because Massachusetts is one of the states amongst those who did not adopt the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act. This means the creditor needs to file a suit on their judgment in Massachusetts in order to obtain a Massachusetts judgment. To do that, the collections lawyer that you hire is first going to investigate just how much assets your debtor has in Massachusetts, and will seek, where appropriate, to obtain an ‘ex parte’ attachment before the Massachusetts action becomes a judgment. Once the Massachusetts collections lawyer you hire has been able to obtain a successful attachment on the assets that will give the Massachusetts collections lawyer’s client a pre-judgment security that will further strengthen chances of getting paid once the judgment has been domesticated.   

How to Enforce a Judgment

Once your foreign judgment is domesticated by Attorney Alan M. Cohen, then you have the same rights as other Massachusetts judgment holders when it comes to enforcing a Massachusetts judgment. There are many debtors who simply choose to ignore these types of judgments, and prefer to hide away their assets while the attorneys keep sending them “persuasive letters” urging them to pay off their outstanding payments. But, the Law offices of Alan M. Cohen LLC, operates differently. Once you have hired experienced, relentless, aggressive and ethical Massachusetts  collections lawyer  Alan M. Cohen, the first thing that will happen is that he will move to not just identify, but also freeze the assets of the judgment debtor before even obtaining a Massachusetts judgment. This is achieved by being relentless with the debtor and using aggressive and effective techniques and other tactics to attempt to ensure that your debtor and their assets do not escape the judgment that you have obtained. More importantly, the Law offices of Alan M. Cohen LLC, is able to achieve all that while remaining within the boundaries of the law. 

With the help of pre-judgment and post judgment attachments your Massachusetts collections attorney Alan M. Cohen works diligently to attach your debtor’s assets, whether located in a bank, investment institution or in real estate. When necessary an experienced Massachusetts collection attorney will have the local deputy sheriff liquidate your debtor’s assets to pay their judgment debt to you. While making your case, the collections attorney seeks to attach any bank accounts of the debtor along with seeking to garnish any wages to make sure every penny is paid back to you by your debtor.

Law can be a complex and complicated area to navigate through, which is why, at Law Offices of Alan M. Cohen LLC, we have experienced and qualified Massachusetts collections lawyers who work with clients who are either out of state or out of the country. At Law Offices of Alan M. Cohen LLC, we don’t just handle court dates so that you don’t have to, we are dedicated to do everything within our power to collect the money that you are due  whether in the enforcement of your Massachusetts judgment or your foreign judgment enforcement. In other words, we work diligently to try to cover you from every angle when it comes to foreign judgment enforcement.

Another unusual aspect of the law regarding how to enforce a judgment in Massachusetts is that in order to enforce your judgment, the creditor often needs a ‘Writ of Execution’ or a WOE from the court. You are entitled as a matter of right to an execution within one year of judgment. If it is beyond one year, then a motion to obtain an execution is required.  If this sounds complicated to you, wait till you see the rest of the text regarding this particular law. This is yet another reason why it will be wise to hire an experienced collections lawyer to deal with your foreign judgment in Massachusetts.  Because only a Massachusetts collections lawyer who focuses is collections and foreign judgment enforcement will be able to provide you with the services you need to make sure you get paid by your debtor.

To find out more about the different ways in which we help our clients with their foreign judgments in Massachusetts, please feel free to contact Law Offices of Alan M. Cohen LLC, today at, or contact us at 508-620 6900. You can also email us at

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