If you do not go to a small claims hearing, the creditor usually wins automatically “by default”. The plaintiff will get a judgment for the amount of money they asked for in the complaint. You can get a copy of the judgment from the court. The judgment will remain for 20 years. Your credit report will show you owe this money for the next 7 years.
For the next 20 years:
- The plaintiff can get an execution to take any car you get if it is worth more than $7,500.
- If you are over 60, the car must be worth more than $15,000 before the plaintiff can get the execution.
- If you get any other unprotected assets, the plaintiff can get an execution to take these.
- If you get a job, the plaintiff can ask the court to let them garnish part of your wages.