Texas Writs of Garnishment to Collect Judgment Liens from Marion County, Texas
Are you facing obstacles in collecting a judgment in Marion County, Texas? Busby & Associates is here to help you overcome them. Our experienced attorneys are skilled in defending, collecting, and enforcing judgments, with a strong emphasis on garnishing bank accounts and financial institutions. As proficient consumer bankruptcy, family law, and divorce lawyers, we also extend our services to assist both obligors and obligees in child support lien cases. Furthermore, we possess the knowledge and expertise to assist you with the domestication of foreign child support liens specific to Marion County, Texas. Contact us today to schedule a consultation, and let us guide you through the process of successfully collecting your judgment.
Texas Judgment liens in Marion County
In Marion County, a properly fixed judgment lien exerts its authority as a lien on all nonexempt real property belonging to the judgment debtor. The creation of this lien involves the accurate recording and indexing of an abstract of judgment. It is crucial to file the abstract in each county where the judgment lien is to be established. The duration of the lien extends for ten years from the date of recordation and indexing, unless the judgment becomes dormant. It is important to note that the judgment on which the lien is based must be final and cannot be interlocutory. However, even if the judgment is under appeal or a supersedeas bond has been filed, an abstract can still be filed on a final judgment. Additionally, if a judgment creditor has taken the necessary steps to secure the lien prior to the judgment being appealed, the appeal itself will not invalidate the effectiveness of those actions in the event of affirmance. These regulations specifically apply to judgments issued by Texas state trial courts and do not encompass the enforcement of judgments from other states or foreign jurisdictions. For the enforcement of such judgments, it is necessary to first domesticate the judgment in Texas to establish a lien, followed by the potential filing of an abstract.
Texas Abstract of Judgment
The abstract of judgment in Texas can be prepared by various individuals, including the judge, justice of the peace, clerk of the court, or the authorized representative of the judgment creditor, such as their agent, attorney, or assignee. However, in small claims and justice courts, the judgment creditor is not allowed to prepare their own abstract. Moreover, abstracts of federal court judgments require the certification of the clerk of the court. To abstract your judgment lien in Marion County, Texas, you can go to the County Clerk’s office situated at 102 W Austin St # 206, Jefferson, Texas 75657.
A comprehensive abstract of judgment in Texas must adhere to specific requirements. These include providing the names of the plaintiff and defendant, mentioning the defendant’s birthdate (if available to the clerk of justice), disclosing the last three numbers of the defendant’s driver’s license and social security number (if obtainable), stating the suit number associated with the judgment, indicating the defendant’s address or providing information about citation, including the date and place of service if the address is not shown in the suit, specifying the date of judgment, mentioning the amount awarded and the outstanding balance, highlighting any child support arrearage, and noting the interest rate specified in the judgment. Additionally, the abstract of judgment should include the mailing address for each plaintiff or judgment creditor. Failure to provide the mailing address may result in the imposition of a penalty filing fee. It is important to verify the abstract prepared by the creditor’s attorney, as unsworn declarations are not permissible.
Recordation of Judgment Liens Abstract
Marion County serves as the designated location for recording the abstract of judgment when the debtor possesses real property there. The abstract is submitted to the Marion County clerk, who proceeds to record it in the county’s real property records, accurately documenting the date and time of recordation. Moreover, the clerk is obligated to note the day and hour of recordation on the abstract itself, while also entering the abstract in the alphabetical index to the real property records, displaying the names of each plaintiff and defendant in the judgment and the corresponding page number of its official recording.
Abstracts of Domesticated Judgment Liens.
The Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act and the Uniform Foreign-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act ensure that foreign judgments are enforceable in Texas on par with judgments filed in the court where they were issued. The foreign judgment holder must fulfill the lien requirements to successfully domesticate the judgment in Texas.
Property To Which Lien Attaches Non-Exempt Real Property
The judgment lien is effective on all nonexempt real property owned by the defendant and located in Marion County, where it is recorded.
Keeping the Judgment and Judgment Lien Alive
1. Non-governmental Judgments
The validity of the judgment lien extends for a period of 10 years following the recording and indexing of an abstract. However, if the judgment becomes dormant, the lien ceases to exist. Hence, it is crucial to (1) keep the judgment active and (2) obtain and record a new abstract of judgment. A judgment enters a dormant state if a writ of execution is not issued within 10 years of its rendition, but it can be revived through scire facias or by initiating an action of debt within two years of dormancy.
2. State or State Agency Judgments.
Judgments made by the state or a state agency do not become dormant and retain their enforceability. A valid abstract of judgment establishes a lien that remains in force for 20 years from the date of filing, and the lien can be extended for an additional 20 years by filing a renewed abstract of judgment.
3. Political Subdivisions.
While dormancy statutes can render judgments of political subdivisions inactive, the revival statute (Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 31.006) allows political subdivisions to revive the judgment at any time, irrespective of the statute of limitations. Therefore, political subdivisions are not limited to the two-year dormancy period for reviving judgments.
4. Child Support Judgments.
The provision in § 34.001 Subsection (c) of the Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code establishes an exclusion for child support judgments from the dormancy statute and extends to all such judgments, regardless of when they were granted or issued.
Property Subject to and Exempt from Execution.
1. Property Subject to Execution.
The judgment debtor’s property can be subject to execution levy if it is not exempted by the constitution, statute, or any other rule of law. Generally, 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 such as stamps, coins, etc.; d. Stocks, bonds, notes, and other investments; e. f. Airplanes. Corporations have no exemption for their property.
2. Property Exempt from Execution.
Both families and single adults enjoy exemptions from execution for property falling under the following categories: a) The homestead b) Personal property falling within specified statutory categories, with a total fair market value of up to $100,000.00 for a family or $50,000.00 for a single adult who is not a member of a family c) Current wages for personal service (excluding child support) and unpaid commissions for personal services, not exceeding twenty-five percent (25%) of the $50/$100,000 aggregate limitations d) Professionally prescribed health aids e) Worker’s compensation payments f) Cemetery lots held for sepulcher purposes g) Property that the judgment debtor sold, mortgaged, or conveyed in trust, provided that the purchaser, mortgagee, or trustee identifies alternative property of sufficient value 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) Designated savings plans, including retirement benefits and health savings plans k) College Savings Plans l) Certain consigned artwork.
WRITS OF GARNISHMENT.
When a judgment creditor wishes to explore whether a third party owes any funds or property to the judgment debtor, they can employ the post-judgment garnishment process. If any outstanding debts are identified, the creditor (garnishor) can obtain a garnishment judgment, directing the third party (garnishee) to make payments to the garnishor in lieu of the judgment debtor.
Requirements to Issue
Garnishment is made available after a judgment is obtained, provided that specific conditions are fulfilled. Firstly, the creditor must possess 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 suspend execution on the judgment. Lastly, the creditor must affirm, to the best of their knowledge, that the judgment debtor does not have adequate property subject to execution in Texas to satisfy the judgment.
Procedure for Securing Issuance Jurisdiction and parties
It is important to recognize that a post-judgment garnishment action is a separate legal action from the main case it intends to enforce. The third-party garnishee should be named as the defendant, as it involves an ancillary lawsuit. It should be filed in the same court that issued the judgment for collection, but under a different cause number.
Service of the writ of garnishment/notice to judgment debtor.
The garnishee must receive the writ of garnishment to initiate the garnishment action. While the judgment defendant is not considered a necessary party to the garnishment action, they must be served with a copy of the writ of garnishment, the application, accompanying affidavits, and court orders as soon as practically feasible after the garnishee has been served. Furthermore, it is required that the copy of the writ served to the defendant includes its contents in 12-point type and is presented in a manner calculated to advise a reasonably attentive person. Failure to provide proper notice to the judgment debtor regarding the garnishment renders any judgment, except one dissolving the writ, invalid.
Banks as Garnishees for Writs of Garnishment
To ensure the proper delivery of garnishment writs to garnishee banks, they should be sent to the address designated as the registered agent of the financial institution in its registration statement filed with the Secretary of State pursuant to Section 201.102 or 201.103 of the Finance Code. Out-of-state financial institutions must file an application for registration with the Secretary of State, following the laws of the state applicable to foreign corporations conducting business in the state, which includes designating an agent for process under Section 201.102. In contrast, Texas financial institutions may file a statement with the Secretary of State appointing an agent for process under Section 201.103.
Tex. R. Civ. P. 663 mandates that the officer executing a writ of garnishment must submit a return that satisfies the citation regulations. It is recommended for the judgment creditor to inspect the return carefully before obtaining a garnishment judgment, especially if it is a default judgment. Returns in garnishment proceedings must adhere to the same rules as other citations. Courts have held returns to be fatally defective if they do not indicate the method and location of service on a corporate garnishee.
Forms for the form and Practical Procedure
If you identify a bank account or other debt owed by the judgment debtor that is eligible for garnishment and it is economically feasible, file an Application for Garnishment supported by a signed affidavit from the judgment creditor’s attorney. Include essential information in the affidavit, such as the original suit and judgment information, garnishee’s name, officers for service and address, and any available account names and numbers.
Let Busby and Associates guide you through the process of collecting your Texas judgment. Their contingency-based services mean you don’t have to worry about upfront costs. Judgments from other states with a judgment debtor in Texas are assessed on a case-by-case basis, potentially with a retainer involved. In Marion County, they possess the knowledge and experience to help you garnish a bank account or financial institution and ensure the successful recovery of the judgment.