abstract of judgment

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Abstract of judgement refers to a copy or summary of a court’s judgement. Some common uses of the term “abstract of judgement” include:

  • In the context of a civil case, abstract of judgement is a document disclosing a monetary award issued by the court in favor of a judgement creditor against a judgement debtor. It includes the rate of interest to be paid on the judgment amount, court costs, and any specific orders for the judgement debtor. An abstract of judgement creates a lien on any real estate property owned by the judgement debtor in the county in which the abstract of judgment is recorded. Issuance procedure and contents of “abstract of judgment” varies according to statutes.
  • In the context of a criminal case, cases such as this one form California, explain that the abstract of judgement is "a contemporaneous, statutorily sanctioned, officially prepared clerical record of the conviction and sentence.” It informs prison officials about the conviction and provides authority for carrying the judgment and sentence into effect.

[Last updated in November of 2021 by the Wex Definitions Team]