Money judgments automatically expire (run out) after 10 years. To prevent this from happening, you (as the judgment creditor) must file a request for renewal of the judgment with the court BEFORE the 10 years run out. If the judgment is not renewed, it will not be enforceable any longer and you will not be able to get your money.
Once a judgment has been renewed, it cannot be renewed again until 5 years later. But make sure it is renewed at least every 10 years or it will expire.
When the judgment is renewed, the interest that has accrued will be added to the principal amount owing. From that point on, you are entitled to interest on the principal and the accrued interest.
- For example, let us say you have a judgment for $6,000 and after nearly 10 years the debtor has not paid you anything. The judgment accrues daily interest of $1.64 ($6,000 x 10% = $600; $600÷ 365 days gives you the daily interest). You seek to renew the judgment after about 9 years and 10 months, or exactly 3,605 days. The accrued interest is $5,912.20 (3,605 days x $1.64).
Once that is added to the original judgment, a renewed judgment of $11,912.20 can be entered. The interest will now accrue at a rate of $3.26/day ($11,912.20 x 10% = $1,191.22 ÷ 365 days).
For the law that provides for the renewal of judgment, check out Code of Civil Procedure sections 683.110 through 683.220.
To renew a judgment:
- Review Code of Civil Procedure sections 683.010 through 683.220.
- You must use an Application for and Renewal of Judgment (Form EJ-190) and the Notice of Renewal of Judgment (Form EJ-195). The Notice of Renewal of Judgment must be personally served on the debtor or served by first-class mail.
- Liens created at the time of the original judgment also must be renewed. This is because when you renew your judgment, the liens are no longer enforceable since the judgment the liens were based on is no longer enforceable.
- In order to extend a real property lien, you must record a certified copy of the Application for and Renewal of Judgment (Form EJ-190) with the county recorder in the county where the property subject to the lien is located. Check out Code of Civil Procedure section 683.180.