After you have won a law suit in China, what is the next step to enforce the judgment?
After you have received a favourable verdict from your litigation or arbitration, the lost party usually will not offer to pay or perform other obligations to you under the judgment or award after losing the case, and will usually refuse to communicate with you about it. In this case, what you should do is to apply to the court to enforce the verdict that you have obtained.
According to the PRC Civil Procedure Law (中华人民共和国民事诉讼法), the PRC Criminal Law (中华人民共和国刑法) and other Chinese laws, the process of applying to the court in China to enforce a judgment or award that has taken effect is as follows.
Step 1: The applicant submits an application for enforcement
The applicant submits an application to the court to enforce the judgment or award. The application to enforce judgement should be submitted to the to the court of first instance or the court where the executed property located; the application to enforce a verdict from arbitration committee should be submitted to the court where the person being enforced (hereinafter referred to as the “executee”) is located or where the executed property is located.
Step 2: The applicant provides property clues, the court verifies and takes enforcement measures
While submitting the application for enforcement, the applicant shall provide the court with written information of the executee's property, such as the executee's bank account, property information, vehicle information, etc. If the applicant submits clear and specific property information, the court shall investigate and verify them within 7 days. After the court verifies that the property information provided by the applicant are authentic, it shall promptly take enforcement measures against the property of the executee.
If the court verifies the deposits in the bank account of the executee, and said deposits are not frozen due to other cases, the court will first transfer the corresponding deposits of the executee to the account of the court according to the amount owed by the executee, and then transfer said deposits to the account provided by the applicant.
If the court verifies the property or vehicle of the executee, and the said property or vehicle is not seized because of other cases, the court will first seize the said property or vehicle and then conduct an official judicial auction, and after the auction is successful, the court will transfer the proceeds of the auction to the account provided by the applicant according to the amount owed by the executee. If the court fails to sell the said property or vehicle, the court may transfer the ownership of the said property or vehicle to the applicant, and the applicant can choose whether to accept it to offset the amount owed by the executee.
Step 3: The applicant applies to the court to investigate property clues and take enforcement measures
If the applicant is unable to identify the property of the executee on his own, he may apply to the court to conduct an investigation.
Based on the application and the rights of court, the court issues a written notice to the executee ordering him to report his own property. After the executee reports its property to the court, the court will investigate and verify. After verification, the court will take the enforcement measures mentioned in the second step with respect to the executee's property, and if necessary, the court will organise a hearing between the applicant and the executee in court.
After the executee reports its property to the court, the applicant has the right to apply to the court to inquire about the property reported by the executee, and the applicant shall keep the information about the executee's property known during the inquiry process confidential.
Step 4: Punishment for the executee who fails to cooperate with the enforcement as required by the court
If the executee refuses to report, falsely reports or overstays the report of his property without justifiable reasons after receiving the notice from the court, or refuses to perform the judgment or award even though he is capable of doing so after reporting his property, the executee will face the following penalties:
1. The court may fine and detain the executee according to the severity of the circumstances, or if the executee is a company or other entity, the court may fine and detain its head. In addition.
2. The applicant may apply to the court to put the executee on the list of defaulted executees. After being put on the above list, the information of the executee will be announced to the public by the court through newspapers, TV and internet, and the executee will be subject to other punitive measures such as restriction of consumption.
3. If the above-mentioned behaviour of the executee is vicious, the executee will constitute the crime of refusing to execute the judgment or ruling, and the court will pursue his criminal responsibility according to law.
If you would like to learn more about filing for enforcement in China, please contact our professional Chinese lawyers.
Larry Zhou, Partner
Landing Law Offices China
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