Texas Writs of Garnishment to Collect Judgment Liens from Dickens County, Texas
At Busby & Associates, we understand that collecting a judgment can be a challenging and frustrating process. That’s why we offer legal services for defending, collecting, and enforcing judgments. Our primary focus is on garnishment of bank accounts and financial institutions, but we also provide 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 Dickens County, Texas. If you are a judgment creditor who is having difficulty recovering a judgment in Dickens County, Texas, contact us, and we will work tirelessly to help you achieve a successful outcome.
Texas Judgment liens in Dickens County
In Dickens County, an abstract of judgment that has been properly recorded and indexed can function as a lien on all nonexempt real property owned by a judgment debtor. To establish a lien, the abstract must be filed in each county where the debtor has property. The lien continues for ten years from the date of recordation and indexing, provided that the judgment does not become dormant. Only final judgments, not interlocutory ones, can be used to create 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 regulations only apply to Texas state trial court judgments. To create a lien using 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
In Texas, specific guidelines must be followed when abstracting a judgment. Generally, the abstract 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 allowed to prepare their own abstract. It should be noted that abstracts of federal court judgments require certification from the clerk of the court. To abstract your judgment lien in Dickens County, Texas, you can visit the County Clerk’s office located at 512 Montgomery, Dickens, Texas 79229.
In Texas, an abstract of judgment must contain specific information to be legally recognized, including the names of the plaintiff and defendant, the defendant’s birthdate (if available), 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. Additionally, the abstract must include the mailing address for each plaintiff or judgment creditor and be verified by the creditor’s attorney. Failure to include the mailing address may result in a penalty filing fee. Unsworn declarations are not permitted.
Recordation of Judgment Liens Abstract
To record the abstract of judgment properly, it must be done in Dickens County if the debtor has real property there. The Dickens County clerk receives the abstract and documents it in the county’s real property records, indicating the date and time of recording. Additionally, the clerk must include 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 provide foreign judgments with the same enforceability as local judgments. The foreign judgment holder must meet the lien requirements when domesticating the judgment in Texas.
Property To Which Lien Attaches Non-Exempt Real Property
The county of recordation, Dickens County, is where the judgment lien takes effect on all nonexempt real property owned by the defendant.
Keeping the Judgment and Judgment Lien Alive
1. Non-governmental Judgments
The judgment lien is valid for a period of 10 years from the date of recording and indexing an abstract, unless the judgment becomes dormant, which terminates the lien. Hence, it is imperative to keep the judgment active and obtain and record a new abstract of judgment to maintain the lien. If a writ of execution is not issued within 10 years of the judgment’s creation, it becomes dormant, but it can be revived through scire facias or a debt action filed within two years of dormancy.
2. State or State Agency Judgments.
Judgments made by the state or a state agency do not go dormant, which means they remain active and enforceable. Moreover, a properly filed abstract of judgment can create a lien for 20 years from the filing date, and a renewed abstract of judgment can renew the lien for another 20 years.
3. Political Subdivisions.
Political subdivisions’ judgments can become dormant under dormancy statutes, but the political subdivision can revive the judgment at any time using the revival statute, Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 31.006. Therefore, the political subdivision is not restricted by the statute of limitations and can revive the judgment even after the two-year dormancy period.
4. Child Support Judgments.
Any judgments for child support are excluded from the dormancy statute under Subsection (c) of § 34.001 of the Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code and this provision applies to all such judgments, irrespective of their date of entry.
Property Subject to and Exempt from Execution.
1. Property Subject to Execution.
The judgment debtor’s property is subject to seizure by execution if it is not exempted by the constitution, statute, or any other legal rule. Typically, the following types 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 of items like stamps, coins, etc.; d. Investments such as stocks, bonds, or notes; e. f. Airplanes. Corporations do not have any exempt property.
2. Property Exempt from Execution.
Certain property categories are not subject to execution, 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 specific legal requirements established by law.
WRITS OF GARNISHMENT.
The post-judgment garnishment is a legal remedy that enables a judgment creditor to investigate if any third party owes any funds or property to the judgment debtor. If any debts are discovered, the creditor (garnishor) can obtain a garnishment judgment, which orders the third party (garnishee) to pay funds to the garnishor instead of the debtor.
Requirements to Issue
After a judgment is obtained, garnishment is available only if specific conditions are fulfilled. Firstly, the creditor must have a valid and subsisting judgment against the debtor, with the judgment being considered final and subsisting from the date of rendition. Secondly, the debtor must not have filed an approved supersedeas bond to prevent execution on the judgment. Finally, the creditor must assert that, to their knowledge, the debtor does not possess enough property in Texas that can be executed to fulfill the judgment.
Procedure for Securing Issuance Jurisdiction and parties
Keep in mind that a post-judgment garnishment action is a separate legal action from the main case it intends to enforce. As a supplementary lawsuit, the third-party garnishee should be named as the defendant. Additionally, it must be filed in the same court that issued the judgment for recovery, but with a distinct cause number.
Service of the writ of garnishment/notice to judgment debtor.
The garnishment action requires the garnishee to be served with the writ of garnishment, and the judgment defendant’s involvement is not compulsory. However, the defendant must be served with 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 understood by a reasonably attentive person. Failure to provide notice of property to the judgment debtor invalidates any judgment, except one that dissolves the writ.
Banks as Garnishees for Writs of Garnishment
The address specified as the registered agent’s location in the financial institution registration statement under Section 201.102 or 201.103 of the Finance Code must be utilized for the delivery of garnishment writs to banks. Out-of-state financial institutions are required to file a registration application with the Secretary of State, following the state’s foreign corporation laws, which includes 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.
To comply with the citation rules, the officer who enforces a writ of garnishment must file a return that satisfies the requirements. According to Tex. R. Civ. P. 663, the judgment creditor should review the return before seeking a garnishment judgment, particularly in cases of default judgment. Returns in garnishment proceedings are governed by the same regulations as citations in general. Courts have invalidated returns that do not show how a corporate garnishee was served and where the service took place.
Forms for the form and Practical Procedure
If a bank account or other debt owed by the judgment debtor that can be garnished is located and it is deemed cost-effective to pursue, you must file an Application for Garnishment, supported by an affidavit signed by the judgment creditor’s attorney. The affidavit should include important details such as the original suit and judgment information, the garnishee’s name, officers for service, and address for service, as well as any available account names and numbers.
Busby and Associates provides contingency-based assistance for collecting judgments in Texas. If the debtor is located in Texas but the judgment is from another state, they will evaluate it on a case-by-case basis and may require a retainer. For judgments in Dickens County, they can help you garnish a bank account or financial institution to recover the amount.