Texas Writs of Garnishment to Collect Judgment Liens from Crockett County, Texas
At Busby & Associates, we offer comprehensive legal services for defending, collecting, and enforcing judgments. Our main focus is on garnishment of bank accounts and financial institutions, but we also offer legal support for consumer bankruptcy, family law, and divorce matters. We can assist both obligors and obligees with child support lien collections and defense, as well as domestication of foreign child support liens in Crockett County, Texas. If you are a judgment creditor who needs assistance recovering a judgment from a debtor in Crockett County, Texas, contact us, and we will work with you to create a personalized plan to help you collect your judgment.
Texas Judgment liens in Crockett County
By properly recording and indexing an abstract of judgment in Crockett County, a creditor can establish a lien on all nonexempt real property owned by the judgment debtor. The abstract must be filed in every county where the debtor has property. The lien is valid for ten years from the date of recordation and indexing, unless the judgment becomes dormant. Only final judgments, not interlocutory ones, can be used to establish a lien. However, even if a judgment is being appealed or a supersedeas bond has been filed, an abstract of judgment can still be filed. If the creditor establishes a lien before the appeal, it remains valid even if the judgment is affirmed. These rules only apply to Texas state trial court judgments. To establish a lien through the abstract of a judgment from another state or foreign country, the judgment must first be domesticated in Texas before an abstract can be filed.
Texas Abstract of Judgment
Texas has specific regulations for abstracting a judgment, which should be followed accordingly. Generally, the abstract of judgment can be prepared by the judge, justice of the peace, clerk of the court, judgment creditor, agent, attorney, or assignee for judgments rendered in most courts, except for small claims and justice courts where the judgment creditor is not permitted to prepare their own abstract. It is important to note that abstracts of federal court judgments require certification from the clerk of the court. To abstract your judgment lien in Crockett County, Texas, you can visit the County Clerk’s office at 909 Ave D, Ozona, Texas 76943.
To ensure that a Texas abstract of judgment is legally valid, certain information must be included. This includes the names of the plaintiff and defendant, the defendant’s birthdate (if known), the defendant’s driver’s license and social security numbers (if available), the suit number, the defendant’s address or citation information, the date the judgment was rendered, the amount of the judgment and balance due, any child support arrearage, and the interest rate. The abstract must also include the mailing address for each plaintiff or judgment creditor and be verified by the creditor’s attorney. If the mailing address is missing, a penalty filing fee will be imposed. Unverified declarations are not allowed.
Recordation of Judgment Liens Abstract
In order to record the abstract of judgment validly, it must be done in Crockett County where the debtor holds real property. The Crockett County clerk receives the abstract and documents it in the county’s real property records, specifying the date and time of recording. Moreover, the clerk must enter the abstract in the alphabetical index to the real property records, displaying the names of both the plaintiff and defendant and the page number where the abstract is recorded.
Abstracts of Domesticated Judgment Liens.
The Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act and the Uniform Foreign-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act permit foreign judgments to be enforced in the same manner as judgments filed in the originating court. When domesticating a foreign judgment in Texas, the foreign judgment holder must comply with the lien requirements.
Property To Which Lien Attaches Non-Exempt Real Property
All nonexempt real property owned by the defendant in Crockett County, as recorded in the county, is bound by the judgment lien.
Keeping the Judgment and Judgment Lien Alive
1. Non-governmental Judgments
The judgment lien will last for 10 years from the date of recording and indexing an abstract, except if the judgment becomes dormant, then the lien will be terminated. Therefore, it is necessary to follow two steps to keep the judgment lien alive: (1) keep the judgment active and (2) obtain and record a new abstract of judgment. If no writ of execution is issued within 10 years of judgment creation, it becomes dormant, but can be revived through scire facias or a debt action brought within two years of dormancy.
2. State or State Agency Judgments.
The enforceability of state or state agency judgments does not go dormant, and a valid abstract of judgment can create a lien for 20 years from the date of filing. By filing a renewed abstract of judgment, the lien can be extended for another 20 years.
3. Political Subdivisions.
Even though dormancy statutes may cause judgments of political subdivisions to become dormant, the political subdivision can revive the judgment at any time using the revival statute, Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 31.006. Hence, the statute of limitations will not bar the political subdivision from reviving the judgment beyond the two-year dormancy period.
4. Child Support Judgments.
Subsection (c) of § 34.001 of the Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code provides a carve-out for child support judgments from the dormancy statute, and this applies to all such judgments, irrespective of their date of entry.
Property Subject to and Exempt from Execution.
1. Property Subject to Execution.
The execution can seize the property of the judgment debtor if it is not exempted by the constitution, statute, or any other legal exemption. Typically, the following categories of property are not exempt: a. Cash on hand or in checking or savings accounts; b. Pleasure boats and their motors and trailers; c. Collections like stamps or coins; d. Investments such as stocks, bonds, or notes; e. f. Airplanes. Corporations have no exempt property.
2. Property Exempt from Execution.
Execution cannot be carried out on property belonging to certain categories, regardless of whether the debtor is a family or a single adult. These categories include: a) the homestead; b) personal property of various categories specified by statute, up to an aggregate fair market value of $100,000.00 for a family or $50,000.00 for a single adult without family connections; c) current wages for personal service (excluding child support payments) and unpaid commissions for personal services, not exceeding 25% of the $50,000/$100,000 aggregate limitations; d) professionally prescribed health aids; e) worker’s compensation payments; f) cemetery lots held for sepulcher purposes; g) property sold, mortgaged, or conveyed in trust by the judgment debtor, if the purchaser, mortgagee, or trustee can identify other property of the debtor sufficient to satisfy the execution; h) assets in the hands of the trustee of a spendthrift trust for the benefit of the judgment debtor; i) certain insurance benefits; j) specific savings plans, including retirement benefits and health savings plans; k) college savings plans; l) consigned artwork that meets the criteria established by law.
WRITS OF GARNISHMENT.
The post-judgment garnishment is a legal process that allows a judgment creditor to scrutinize the relationship between a third party and the judgment debtor to determine if there are any funds or property owed to the debtor. If any debts are discovered, the creditor (garnishor) can obtain a garnishment judgment, which mandates the third party (garnishee) to pay funds to the garnishor instead of the debtor.
Requirements to Issue
Only after meeting specific conditions can garnishment be used following a judgment. Firstly, the creditor must have a valid and subsisting judgment against the debtor, with the judgment being final and subsisting from the date of rendition. Secondly, the debtor cannot have filed an approved supersedeas bond to suspend execution on the judgment. Finally, the creditor must swear that, to their knowledge, the debtor does not possess sufficient property in Texas that can be executed to satisfy the judgment.
Procedure for Securing Issuance Jurisdiction and parties
Remember that when filing for post-judgment garnishment, it is a separate legal action from the main case it intends to enforce. The third-party garnishee must be identified as the defendant, as it is supplementary to the primary lawsuit. It must be filed in the same court that issued the judgment to be collected, but with a different cause number.
Service of the writ of garnishment/notice to judgment debtor.
Serving the writ of garnishment on the garnishee commences the garnishment action, and the judgment defendant is not required to participate. However, the defendant must receive a copy of the writ, application, affidavits, and court orders as soon as practical after the garnishee has been served. The copy of the writ served on the defendant must include the contents of the writ in bold 12-point typeface and in a manner that is easily comprehensible for a reasonably attentive person. Any judgment, except for one that dissolves the writ, becomes null and void if the judgment debtor does not receive property notice.
Banks as Garnishees for Writs of Garnishment
In order to deliver garnishment writs to garnishee banks, the address designated as the registered agent of the financial institution in its registration statement under Section 201.102 or 201.103 of the Finance Code must be used. Out-of-state financial institutions must file an application for registration with the Secretary of State and comply with the state’s foreign corporation laws, which require designating an agent for process under Section 201.102. Texas financial institutions may appoint an agent for process by submitting a statement to the Secretary of State under Section 201.103.
The officer who executes a writ of garnishment must file a return that complies with the citation rules. Tex. R. Civ. P. 663 stipulates that the judgment creditor should review the return before obtaining a garnishment judgment, particularly in the case of a default judgment. Returns in garnishment proceedings are subject to the same rules as citations in general. Courts have invalidated returns for not indicating the method and location of service on a corporate garnishee.
Forms for the form and Practical Procedure
Once you have located a bank account or other debt owed by the judgment debtor that can be garnished and determined that it is worth pursuing, you must file an Application for Garnishment, along with an affidavit signed by the judgment creditor’s attorney. The affidavit should include essential information such as the original suit and judgment details, the garnishee’s name, officers for service, and address for service, as well as any available account names and numbers.
If you need help collecting a Texas judgment, Busby and Associates may be able to offer assistance on a contingency basis. For judgments from other states with the judgment debtor located in Texas, they evaluate on a case-by-case basis and may require a retainer. If the judgment debtor and/or judgment is in Crockett County, they can help you garnish a bank account or financial institution to recover the judgment.