Texas Writs of Garnishment to Collect Judgment Liens from Harrison County, Texas
At Busby & Associates, we are committed to helping our clients collect judgments in Harrison County, Texas. Our knowledgeable attorneys are skilled in defending, collecting, and enforcing judgments, with a focus on garnishment of bank accounts and financial institutions. We also offer legal support for consumer bankruptcy, family law, and divorce matters, and we can assist both obligors and obligees with child support lien collections and defense, and domestication of foreign child support liens. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and learn how we can help you collect what you are owed.
Texas Judgment liens in Harrison County
A lien on a judgment debtor’s nonexempt real property in Harrison County can be achieved by properly fixing a judgment lien. An abstract of judgment must be recorded and indexed accurately and filed in every county where the lien is to be fixed. If the judgment does not become dormant, the lien continues for ten years from the date of recordation and indexing. The underlying judgment must be final, not interlocutory, for a lien to be established, and an abstract can be filed on a final judgment even if the judgment is being appealed or a supersedeas bond has been filed. The effect of the necessary steps taken by a judgment creditor to obtain a lien before an appeal is not destroyed in the event of an affirmance. These rules apply only to Texas state trial court judgments and do not apply to other states and foreign judgments. To establish a lien for such judgments, domestication in Texas is required followed by abstracting the judgment.
Texas Abstract of Judgment
Complying with Texas state guidelines is key when it comes to abstracting a judgment. Typically, 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. Remember that abstracts of federal court judgments require certification from the clerk of the court. If you need to abstract your judgment lien in Harrison County, Texas, you can do so at the County Clerk’s office located at 200 W Houston St # 234, Marshall, Texas 75670.
An abstract of judgment in Texas must include several key pieces of information, such as the names of the parties involved, the defendant’s birthdate (if known), and the last three digits of their driver’s license and social security numbers (if available). It must also indicate the suit number, the defendant’s address, or the citation’s nature, date, and place of service if the address isn’t shown. Additionally, the document should specify the date the judgment was rendered, the amount for which it was rendered, and any balance due, including child support arrearages, along with the interest rate mentioned in the judgment. Finally, the abstract must provide the mailing address of each plaintiff or judgment creditor. If it doesn’t, a penalty filing fee will be assessed, and the abstract must be verified by the creditor’s attorney.
Recordation of Judgment Liens Abstract
If the debtor owns real property in Harrison County, the abstract of judgment must be recorded there. The Harrison County clerk receives the abstract and documents it in the county’s real property records, specifying the date and time of documentation. Moreover, 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.
Judgments filed under the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act and the Uniform Foreign-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act have the same level of enforceability as judgments filed in the court of origin. When domesticating a foreign judgment in Texas, the foreign judgment holder must fulfill the lien requirements.
Property To Which Lien Attaches Non-Exempt Real Property
All nonexempt real property owned by the defendant and recorded in Harrison County is subject to the judgment lien, which takes effect in the county.
Keeping the Judgment and Judgment Lien Alive
1. Non-governmental Judgments
The duration of a judgment lien is ten years from the date of recording and indexing an abstract, unless it becomes dormant due to the absence of a writ of execution within that period. Therefore, to keep the lien in effect, it is necessary to keep the judgment alive and record a new abstract of judgment. A dormant judgment can be revived through scire facias or an action of debt within two years of dormancy.
2. State or State Agency Judgments.
The enforceability of state or state agency judgments does not go dormant and remains in effect for the lien’s entire lifespan. A valid abstract of judgment can establish a lien that lasts for 20 years from the filing date, and the lien can be renewed for another 20 years by filing a renewed abstract of judgment.
3. Political Subdivisions.
Judgments of political subdivisions may go dormant under dormancy statutes, but the revival statute, Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 31.006, allows the political subdivision to revive the judgment at any time. Thus, the political subdivision is not barred by the statute of limitations and can revive the judgment even beyond the two-year dormancy period.
4. Child Support Judgments.
All judgments for child support are exempted from the dormancy statute by § 34.001 Subsection (c) of the Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code, which applies to all such judgments, regardless of their age.
Property Subject to and Exempt from Execution.
1. Property Subject to Execution.
The execution is empowered to take the judgment debtor’s property, except when it is protected by the constitution, statute, or any other legal rule. Generally, the following types of property are not protected: 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 have no protected property.
2. Property Exempt from Execution.
The following categories of property are exempt from execution, regardless of whether it belongs to a family or a single adult: a. The homestead b. Personal property from various categories defined by statute, up to an aggregate fair market value of $100,000.00 for a family or $50,000.00 for a single adult not belonging to a family c. Current wages from personal services (excluding child support payments) and unpaid commissions for personal services not exceeding twenty-five percent (25%) of the $50/$100,000 aggregate limits d. Health aids prescribed by professionals e. Compensation payments for work-related injuries; f. Cemetery lots held for burial purposes g. Property that the debtor sold, mortgaged, or conveyed in trust, as long as the purchaser, mortgagee, or trustee identifies other property of the debtor sufficient to meet the execution; h. Assets in the hands of a spendthrift trust trustee for the benefit of the judgment debtor i. Specific insurance benefits; and j. Certain savings plans, including retirement benefits and health savings plans k. College Savings Plans l. Specific consigned artwork
WRITS OF GARNISHMENT.
The post-judgment garnishment is a legal remedy available to a judgment creditor to determine if a third party owes any debts or property to the judgment debtor. If any debts are discovered, the creditor (garnishor) can obtain a garnishment judgment, ordering the third party (garnishee) to pay funds to the garnishor instead of the debtor.
Requirements to Issue
To use garnishment following a judgment, specific requirements must be satisfied. Firstly, the creditor must possess a valid and subsisting judgment against the debtor, with the judgment being deemed 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 affirm that, based on their knowledge, the judgment debtor does not hold sufficient property in Texas subject to execution to fulfill the judgment.
Procedure for Securing Issuance Jurisdiction and parties
When pursuing post-judgment garnishment, it’s crucial to understand that it is a separate legal action from the main case it aims to enforce. The third-party garnishee should be identified as the defendant since it is an additional lawsuit. It should be submitted in the same court that rendered the judgment to be collected, but with a different cause number.
Service of the writ of garnishment/notice to judgment debtor.
When initiating a garnishment action, the writ of garnishment must be served on the garnishee, and the judgment defendant is not a necessary party. Nonetheless, 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 contain 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
To ensure the proper delivery of 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 utilized. For out-of-state financial institutions, compliance with the state’s foreign corporation laws, including designating an agent for process under Section 201.102, requires the filing of an application for registration with the Secretary of State. In contrast, Texas financial institutions have the option to appoint an agent for process by submitting a statement to the Secretary of State under Section 201.103.
As per Tex. R. Civ. P. 663, the officer responsible for carrying out a writ of garnishment must file a return that meets the citation guidelines. The judgment creditor should inspect the return before pursuing a garnishment judgment, particularly in cases of default judgment. Returns in garnishment proceedings must conform to the same rules as citations in general. Courts have rejected returns that do not indicate the method and place of service on a corporate garnishee.
Forms for the form and Practical Procedure
Upon discovering a bank account or other debt belonging to the judgment debtor that can be garnished and is deemed financially feasible, file an Application for Garnishment with a supporting affidavit. The affidavit must be signed by the judgment creditor’s attorney and contain essential information, such as the original suit and judgment details, the garnishee’s name, officers for service, service address, and any available account names and numbers.
Let Busby and Associates help you collect your Texas judgment on a contingency basis, so you only pay if they recover the amount owed. For judgments from other states with the debtor in Texas, they evaluate each case individually and may require a retainer. In Harrison County, they can help you garnish a bank account or financial institution to recover the amount owed.