General Question

Yellowdog's avatar

What about when the Courts and / or Law Enforcement doesn't uphold what the state law says must be done?

Asked by Yellowdog (2913points) February 15th, 2017

So, I WON my girlfriend’s Lawsuit.

The judgement says we have the option of financial compensation and/or the lawful seizure of our property from a house that is rented by the perpetrator.

In short, the problem is, the local sheriff (constable) won’t do what the law says.

The law (judgement) says what I said above. But the perp has no money besides a SSI check which cannot be garnished. And the property IS in the house (the perp is even boasting and showing pictures on Facebook).

But the people at the desk at the civic court say (wrongly) that all a constable can do is be present and stand outside and cannot interfere or force entry.

Since the perp has no money and we want our stuff—and the law details on how and when the property must be seized by the Sheriff or law enforcement— what do you do when they won’t DO it?

Yeah—get an attorney. I know the drill. But why/how can an attorney have access to getting it done ???

We’ve done our homework. The law is detailed and spilled out for us. We have a right to seize our property. But the local law enforcement says no.

I won’t name the town for fear of reprisal but its one of the slob-urbs of Memphis.

The judgement is in our favor. We won. We cannot get past the idiots at the front desk and don’t even have access to the judge who ruled in our favor.

Any help?

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11 Answers

Yellowdog's avatar


— The perp (defendant) claimed to own the house and we paid rent. The Judge agrees but we weren’t even asking for that,

—We provided more than 300 dollars worth of food and other supplies / repairs / aid. We’re not even asking for that,

—The perp did NOT own the house (rented) —does not own squat, even. Locked us out after we provided a bountiful Thanksgiving dinner in a warm and wonderful house,

—The perp kept our stuff after locking us out

—We filed a replevin lawsuit and won.

—The perp had seven days to return the property to the civic court or to us

—We are entitled (by the judgement) financial compensation for our proven losses or lawful seizure of our property by law enforcement

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Where is your lawyer??

Yellowdog's avatar

We don’t have one. This is a small-claims-court type lawsuit. A lawyer isn’t necessary. We won. The judge says we won. We have paperwork saying we won.

I agree a lawyer would be a good and expensive and probably effective ally. But why should we have to pay thousands to get same amount of goods?

If already ruled in our favor— why does a Lawyer get audience with the judge which we don’t get?

The law has already acted. Law Enforcement has their high-school assistant principal mentality of ‘no, we can’t do that, This is small claims court, not a criminal case’ even though the laws say differently.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

It should not cost thousands, first visit with a lawyer is usually free. They tell what costs are involve and yes they may know the right button to push at the Sheriff’s office.

They may play golf together.

Patty_Melt's avatar

If the house is a rental can you get the owner to help you get the cops uprooted?
Maybe with a go ahead from the property owner the cops might feel okay abour it.

tinyfaery's avatar

(This is California info) If you have an outstanding judgement in your favor the county sheriff can be subpoenaed to claim property on your behalf. You need an attorney for that. You can also retain a collection service to get it for you, but they charge fees, obviously. Not sure what you want is worth, but judgments can be hard to claim, especially if their wages cannot be garnished.

SergeantQueen's avatar

An attorney can force them to give you property back by doing things only a lawyer can do, such as requesting subpoenas, etc. In a case this small, it shouldn’t cost a huge amount of money. Hiring an attorney, in this case, will do you way more good than harm. There might be other laws and things she’s breaking that you aren’t aware of that your lawyer can help you get justice for, also. You don’t need to hire a big high-end lawyer that charges 1,000$ a minute. honestly, a lawyer from a small law office that specializes in civil cases or has experience with civil cases should be able to help you, and for cheaper.

Zaku's avatar

The lawyer helps because he (hopefully) knows the rules as well as or better than the desk clerks, sheriff, etc and you hire him to be on your side and come up with solutions.

I’d ask a lawyer, but there may be an issue with the tenant’s right to not open the door, which is probably limited (like maybe you need to make a reasonable appointment). I’m making up a likely situation, since I’m not a lawyer, but for instance if the tenant won’t communicate to make an appointment, you may be able to require the owner to get you access, and if they fail in a reasonable amount of time you may have recourse against them based on your ruling, though your damages might be limited to what you can prove your stuff is worth. Though the lawyer may know things to say to either the tenant or the owner to convince them they’d better, since disobeying the court order may result in a penalty to them (possibly at judge’s liberal discretion).

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, you could take it back to small claims court. Since it’s the same case, which you’ve already paid for, you shouldn’t have to pay again. See what the judge has to say.

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