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Retrieving Debt from Third-Party AssetsWhen a court rules in favor of a creditor who has filed a lawsuit against a debtor, that creditor becomes a judgment creditor. This status gives a judgment creditor in Illinois several methods by which it can collect on the debt, such as filing a citation to discover the debtor’s assets and obtaining a judgment lien against a debtor’s property. It is wise to also look into any third-party assets that the debtor can claim, such as bank holdings and people who owe the debtor money. Third-party assets may help you in retrieving a debt if the debtor’s own assets are not enough.

Third-Party Discovery

If you believe that a third party may be holding some of your judgment debtor’s assets, you will need to file a citation for discovery with that party. The debtor must also be notified of the third-party citation. The third party is required to respond to your citation, even if they do not hold any of the debtor’s assets. If they fail to respond, you can receive a conditional judgment against the third party for what the judgment debtor owes.

When discovery confirms the debtor’s assets, the third party must freeze those assets until the court rules on whether they should be turned over. The debtor is allowed to use exemptions to protect third-party assets, including:

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