Texas Writs of Garnishment to Collect Judgment Liens from Bee County, Texas
At Busby & Associates, we have the knowledge and experience to assist judgment creditors in collecting from a debtor who’s property is in Bee County, Texas. We offer a wide range of legal services related to judgments, including defense, collection, and enforcement. Our main area of abilities is garnishing bank accounts and financial institutions, but we also provide support for consumer bankruptcy, family law, and divorce cases, for both obligors and obligees under child support liens. Additionally, we can assist with the domestication of foreign child support liens in Texas. Give us a call and we’ll help you navigate the process and take action to collect your judgment when your debtor lives in Bee County, Texas.
Texas Judgment liens
A judgment lien serves as a hold on all non-exempt real property belonging to the judgment debtor in Bee County (the county of recordation and indexing). To create a judgment lien, the abstract of judgment must be recorded and indexed properly and filed in every county where the lien is intended to be fixed. The lien remains effective for ten years from the date of recordation, assuming the judgment does not become dormant. It is important to note that the judgment on which the lien is based must be final, not interlocutory. The filing of an abstract of a final judgment can take place even if the judgment is being appealed or a supersedeas bond has been filed. In these instances, if the judgment creditor has taken the necessary steps to obtain a lien prior to the appeal of the judgment, the appeal will not have an impact on the effectiveness of the lien if it is affirmed. These rules are applicable to Texas state trial court judgments and do not apply to the enforcement of other states’ or foreign judgments. To create a lien in such cases, the judgment must first be domesticated in Texas, and then it may be possible to abstract the judgment once the domestication process is complete.
Texas Abstract of Judgment
According to Texas laws, the task of creating an abstract of judgment can be handled by either a judge, justice of the peace, clerk of the court, or the agent, attorney, or assignee of the judgment creditor. This rule does not apply to small claims and justice courts, where the judgment creditor is not allowed to prepare their own abstract. The certificate from the clerk of the court is a requirement for abstracts of federal court judgments. In Bee County, Texas you would abstract your judgment lien at the County Clerk’s office located at 105 W Corpus Christi St #108, Beeville, Texas 78102.
An abstract of judgment in Texas must include the following information to be deemed valid: (1) the names of the plaintiff and defendant; (2) the defendant’s birthdate, if obtainable by the clerk of justice; (3) the last three digits of the defendant’s driver’s license number, if obtainable; (4) the last three digits of the defendant’s social security number, if obtainable; (5) the suit number in which the judgment was granted; (6) the defendant’s address or, if not listed in the suit, the citation’s details and the date and location of service; (7) the date of judgment; (8) the amount of the judgment and the remaining balance; (9) any outstanding child support arrearage; (10) the interest rate specified in the judgment. Additionally, it is important to note that the abstract must include the mailing address for each plaintiff or judgment creditor, or a penalty fee will be imposed. Furthermore, the abstract prepared by the creditor’s attorney must be verified and unsworn declarations are not acceptable.
To ensure that the abstract of judgment is recorded in Bee County where the debtor has real property, the county clerk must file it in the Bee County’s real property records and document the date and time of recordation. Additionally, the clerk must add the names of the plaintiffs and defendants in the judgment, as well as the page number in the records where the abstract is recorded, to the alphabetical index of the real property records.
Abstracts of Domesticated Judgments.
As per the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act and the Uniform Foreign-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act, foreign judgments are enforceable in the same manner as if they were filed in the court where they were granted. This applies to the holder of the foreign judgment seeking to domesticate it in Texas, who must also comply with the lien requirements as stated in these acts.
Property to Which Lien Attaches Non-Exempt Real Property
The defendant’s real property that is not exempt in Bee County, the county of recordation is subject to the lien for judgment.
Keeping the Judgment and Judgment Lien Alive
- Non-governmental Judgments
The lien resulting from a judgment stays in effect for a decade after recording and indexing, unless the judgment becomes dormant. To maintain the lien, steps must be taken to both keep the judgment active and record a new abstract. If a writ of execution is not issued within 10 years of the judgment’s rendition, the judgment becomes dormant. The dormant judgment can be reactivated by either scire facias or by filing an action of debt before the second anniversary of the judgment becoming dormant.
- State or State Agency Judgments.
A judgment issued by a state or state agency does not lose its enforceability over time and can be secured through a lien for 20 years from the date of filing an abstract of judgment. This lien can be extended for another 20 years by filing a renewed abstract of judgment, maintaining the judgment’s validity and enforceability over time.
- Political Subdivisions.
The dormancy statutes indicate that judgments made by political subdivisions may become dormant. However, the revival statute in Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 31.006 permits the revival of these judgments at any time, regardless of the dormancy period.
- Child Support Judgments.
- 34.001 of the Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code’s Subsection (c) stipulates that judgments for child support are not subject to the dormancy statute and applies to all child support judgments, regardless of when they were rendered.
Property Subject to and Exempt from Execution.
- Property Subject to Execution.
The property of the judgment debtor can be subject to levy by execution, unless it falls under constitutional, statutory, or other legal exemptions. Typically, cash, pleasure boats, collections, financial investments, and airplanes are not considered exempt property. Notably, corporations do not have any exempt property that can be protected from execution.
- Property Exempt from Execution.
Property that is not subject to execution for both families and single adults: the primary residence, personal items with a fair market value of $100,000 for families and $50,000 for single adults as stated in statute, wages earned for personal services (excluding child support payments), unpaid commissions for personal services that do not surpass 25% of the $50/$100,000 aggregate limitations, health aids prescribed by a professional, worker’s compensation payments, cemetery plots held for burial purposes, property that the debtor sold, mortgaged, or conveyed in trust if the purchaser, mortgagee, or trustee can provide other property of the debtor to satisfy the execution, assets in the hands of a spendthrift trust for the benefit of the judgment debtor, certain insurance benefits, and certain savings plans such as retirement benefits and health savings plans, college savings plans, and consigned artwork.
WRITS OF GARNISHMENT
The post-judgment garnishment procedure allows a judgment creditor to assess the relationship between a third party and the judgment debtor to find out if there are any funds or assets owed to the judgment debtor by the third party. If this is the case, the creditor can then get a garnishment judgment that requires the third party to pay the funds to the creditor instead of the judgment debtor.
Requirements to Issue
Garnishment can be executed if the following conditions exist: a) The creditor holds a valid and subsisting judgment against the debtor, b) The debtor has not filed an approved bond to halt execution on the judgment, and c) The creditor asserts that, to their knowledge, the judgment debtor does not possess property in Texas that can be executed to satisfy the judgment, according to their oath.
Procedure for Securing Issuance Jurisdiction and parties
A post-judgment garnishment is a separate legal action from the main lawsuit it is intended to enforce. The garnishment action is ancillary to the main suit and should be brought against the third-party garnishee as the defendant. The post-judgment garnishment application must be filed in the court that issued the judgment to be collected. For instance, if the original lawsuit was filed in the 245th judicial district court of Bee County, Texas, the garnishment application must also be filed in Bee County in that court, but with a distinct cause number.
Service of the writ of garnishment/notice to judgment debtor.
The garnishee is the party that the writ of garnishment must be served upon, and the judgment defendant is not mandatory in the garnishment action. Nevertheless, they must receive a copy of the writ, the application, accompanying affidavits, and court orders as soon as possible after the writ is served on the garnishee. Furthermore, the copy of the writ served to the defendant must be in 12-point type and written in a manner that is easily understandable to a reasonably attentive person. Not giving proper notice to the judgment debtor will render any judgment, except for one dissolving the writ, void.
Banks as Garnishees
In order to serve writs of garnishment on garnishee banks, the address designated as the registered agent of the financial institution in its registration statement filed with the Secretary of State must be used, as per Section 201.102 and 201.103 of the Finance Code. These sections require out-of-state financial institutions to register with the Secretary of State and appoint an agent for the process, and allow Texas financial institutions to file a statement with the Secretary of State appointing an agent for the process.
As per Tex. R. Civ. P. 663, the officer executing a writ of garnishment is obligated to provide a return. Before obtaining a garnishment judgment, particularly in cases of default judgment, the judgment creditor should review the return thoroughly. The rules for citations also apply to returns in garnishment proceedings. In the past, defects in returns have been identified for failing to show the manner of service on a corporate garnishee and the place where it was served.
Forms for the form and Practical Procedure
Before garnishing a bank account or other debt, it is necessary to locate the account and confirm that there are sufficient funds to make the process cost-effective. Once this is determined, an Application for Garnishment must be filed along with a supporting affidavit. The affidavit, usually signed by the attorney representing the judgment creditor, should include the following information: a. Original suit and judgment details, including credits applied to the judgment; b. Adequate garnishee name, authorized officials for service, and service address, together with c. account names and numbers if available.
Busby and Associates can help you collect your Texas judgment and assist in garnishing a bank account or financial institution within Bee County the county of the judgment debtor. Judgments from other states where the debtor is located in Texas will be evaluated individually and a retainer may be required.