Enforcing a judgment

A judgment takes effect from the day it is given or made and payment of a money judgment must take place within 14 days of the date of the judgment (unless the court orders otherwise). A party can apply for further time to pay or to pay by instalments.

The court will not automatically enforce a judgment requiring the loser to pay. Instead, the winner has to take enforcement steps. Various enforcement measures are available where the judgment debtor fails to pay, including the seizing of goods and third party debt orders (where a debt payable to the judgment debtor is transformed into a debt payable to the judgment creditor). A judgment creditor can also obtain an order against the judgment debtor requiring it to provide details of its assets.

It will be necessary to enforce in the loser’s home country. That will require first obtaining recognition from the home country court and then enforcement against the assets.

The enforcement of a UK judgment in another country will be governed by the 2005 Hague Convention (where there is an exclusive jurisdiction clause), under applicable national laws, or under bilateral treaties, depending on which country the judgment is being enforced.

These materials are written and provided for general information purposes only. They are not intended and should not be used as a substitute for taking legal advice. Specific legal advice should be taken before acting on any of the topics covered.

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