Asset Research for Debt Collection Saves Money and Time

Asset Research or Asset Location uses advanced skip tracing techniques to find assets. The resulting information helps you determine the next step in your debt collection process. A completed Asset Research Report provides you with the answers needed to make informed decisions about the debtor, which saves you time and money!

When Should You Request an Asset Research Report?

Asset Research should be done anytime a lawsuit is filed or a settlement is being considered. Prior to spending money on litigation it is prudent to know about a defendant’s financial situation. Not doing your homework can result in wasted filing fees, process server fees and wasted time and effort.

Know Your Collection Probability

Through general skip tracing results, you are able to obtain a judgement. This is where asset research and location can help. Knowing your probability of collection determines your collection efforts. If you pursue a judgment and then discover assets are nonexistent, you’re right back where you started just a little further in the hole.

Do Your Homework

Due diligence should be a required step when contemplating a more rigorous strategy or settling a case. Whether or not assets are to be found it’s best to know before proceeding.

A judgement gives the right to execute on assets. There are varying ways to collect on a judgement:

Judgement on Real Property

A judgment i.e. put a lien on real property. If a defendant owns real-estate of any kind, including; primary residence, income property, vacant land, commercial property etc, a lien can be placed on this property. It is possible to foreclose in order to collect a debt, more commonly a lien will encumber a property. When a debtor attempts to sell the real property, the lien must be dealt with in order to have a clear title. Real property cannot be transferred without a clear title. This may force the debtor to pay off the lien or forfeit the sale. A lien holder may have to hold the lien but can be assured of some satisfaction. This may take some time but is always recommended.

• State laws may vary so it is important to do a little research to find out what options are available in any particular area. Sheriff’s sales are possible but all liens must be satisfied. Knowing what other encumbrances exist is critical information. Sometimes a full title search may be required.

These options may not be quick, but they are effective.

Is a Settlement in Your Best Interest?

When contemplating a settlement, asset search should be done in order to make an informed decision. Are you getting a good deal or perhaps leaving possible dollars on the table? A defendant will naturally try to settle for as little as possible. An insurance company may only be responsible for the policy limits, but the defendant may have the ability to pay more. There may be substantial real estate or business holdings. It is prudent to know before making a deal. Asset information is a powerful commodity, the more you have the better off you’ll be. Asset research will help you make informed decisions.

Wage Garnishment

Employment Locate. If you can locate a judgement debtor’s place of employment, a writ of garnishment can be served to their employer. This will entitle you to a percentage of the debtor’s take home pay. Laws vary greatly from state to state. This is a very effective way to get paid, not only do you receive a portion of the pay check, but employers frown on the additional paper work. The employee may feel pressure to begin paying voluntarily as a result.

Bank Account

A judgement gives a creditor the right to execute on liquid assets such as bank accounts. If a bank account can be found it is possible to attach all of the funds in the account. Sometimes you get lucky and the entire amount of the judgement is in the account, and the judgement is satisfied through your writ of garnishment. Most debtors will not continue to deposit money in an account once it has been “hit” the first time. There may be thousands in an account or just pennies. A garnishment is a court order to attach any available funds in the account.

• The Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act has made locating bank accounts very difficult. It is not legal to make “Gag” calls or ruse calls either to the debtor or to make any misrepresentation to anyone including a financial institution.



ARBI Asset Research services for debt collection are designed to help you accomplish your goals, whether you are attempting to collect a debt, choosing the most appropriate collection technique or deciding whether a settlement is appropriate.

What is Skip Tracing?

People often ask me “What is Skip Tracing?” Skip tracing is the process of taking the information supplied by our clients and following leads from there. Sometimes contacting neighbors, landlords, roommates, ex-employers and co-workers. Anyone who may have information that will lead to a successful locate.

Where Does the Term “Skip Tracing” Come From?

What is Skip TracingThe term skip tracing comes from the phrase “to skip town”. The act of leaving a known location and not leaving a forwarding address for those who would have interest in the whereabouts of a given subject. ( Subject is the term we will use for the individual that is being sought.) These may include creditors, landlords with a surviving balance on a lease, or unpaid damages to property, witness to a legal issue, (whether or not the subject is a defendant or has knowledge of a case that be useful in a legal matter). Possibly an old friend that you’ve lost touch with and you would like to renew a friendship. The most common reason to perform a skip trace is monetary; to collect money. It is nearly impossible to collect from someone when their location is unknown.

How has the Internet Changed Skip Tracing Searches?

The interpretation of what is skip tracing has changed with the advent of the internet. Some define skip tracing as searching for and accumulating data on a subject. If that’s the goal fine, but it does not guarantee a successful conclusion which is to actually locate the subjects current location i.e. address and contact number.

Why do Database Skip Tracing Companies Provide Outdated Results?

Database Results Not Always AccurateMost data accumulated is out dated, oftentimes many years old. It never goes away. The proprietary data bases that a professional investigator will use is often updated daily. Even the smallest transaction can update a credit header i.e. getting a new cell phone, a new internet connection, or applying for cable TV. Things we all do in the course of living our lives. If a subject is purposely hiding it can be difficult to avoid detection.

Often a subject has not skipped town but merely moved, did everything correctly, such as leaving a forwarding address with the post office. These forwarding notices expire and mail is the returned to sender. Telephone numbers are disconnected without reference to a new number. This is very common now as people disconnect landlines in favor of going strictly with a cell phone. There is no public 411 directory for cell phones. Someone may have moved a few blocks but might just as well moved to Timbuktu.

Skip Tracing Social MediaWith the advent of social media i.e.; Face book, Twitter, Linkden etc people have become much easier to follow but there are no address or telephone information on these sites. They could be posting from anywhere. You’ll find that they are alive, watching Monday night football and had chicken for dinner but little else.

Who is a professional skip tracer and why hire one?

A professional skip tracer is a trained investigator who knows what data is available and where to find it. There are numerous proprietary data bases that are not generally available to the public. All of the can be valuable to some degree and others can be almost overwhelming. I have some of these reports transmitted to me by a client attempting to locate an individual on their own. Sixty pages of data was forwarded to me, I felt as though I was reviewing the subjects entire personal history. Two hours later, severe eye strain and a used up printer cartridge and I was still no closer to the subjects current location than when I started. It was interesting and even a little fun but didn’t help me accomplish my objective. My object was to find the subjects current whereabouts. My client had spent nearly twice the money and countless hours of valuable time as the fee for a successful locate would have been. I shredded this document, started over and located the subject a short time later.

Most people can be located by an experienced professional investigator i.e. skip tracer, as most people are totally unaware of what will become public information. Merely filling out a new application for a lease can result in a credit bureau inquiry and updating personal information. Having the right resources is the professional skip tracer’s stock in trade.

Why is Integrity Important in Skip Tracing Search?

Best Skip Tracers

A professional investigator i.e. skip tracer is a skilled communicator with integrity, who has the ability to make an interviewee comfortable and willing to release information. With all the publicity identity theft has received in the last few years getting anyone to talk openly can be quite a challenge. Questions like “why do you want to know” are nearly always asked. The truth is always best when in response to this question, but caution must be taken in order to insure the subjects right not have their personal business discussed with a third party. It is sometimes best that the investigator not know the entire circumstances of why they are tracking a subject down.

Can I Do My Own Skip Tracing Searches?

Yes, you can do your own skip tracing searches? Sifting through the mounds of data available can be a daunting and overwhelming task. Should you decide to tackle this challenge on your own give us a call and we’ll try to help you get started.

How Can I Save Money with Professional Skip Tracing Services?

Choosing a professional skip tracing company with years of experience and does not solely rely on data base searches to back up their claims is a good start. We at ARBI have 35 years of excellence providing professional skip tracing services to clients, corporations, banks and mortgage companies nationwide. We can save you the headaches, valuable time, and money with our professional No Find/No Fee Skip Tracing Services.

Skip Tracing Services, Pay When We Locate

 If you are still unclear as to What is Skip Tracing, we can give you the answers, call today 1-800-777-7860.

Happy Tracking

Dan Lansing
Owner, American Research Bureau, Inc.