Texas Writs of Garnishment to Collect Judgment Liens from Newton County, Texas
Are you struggling with collecting a judgment in Newton County, Texas? Look no further than Busby & Associates. Our team of experienced attorneys is skilled in defending, collecting, and enforcing judgments, with a particular focus on garnishing bank accounts and financial institutions. As skilled consumer bankruptcy, family law, and divorce lawyers, we also extend our services to assist both obligors and obligees in child support lien cases. Additionally, we have the expertise to handle the domestication of foreign child support liens specific to Newton County, Texas. Don’t let the challenges of collecting your judgment overwhelm you. Contact us today, and let us guide you through the process with confidence.
Texas Judgment liens in Newton County
In Newton County, a judgment lien that is properly fixed serves as a lien on all nonexempt real property owned by the judgment debtor. This lien is established through the accurate recording and indexing of an abstract of judgment. To fix the judgment lien, it is necessary to file the abstract of judgment in each county where the lien is sought. The duration of the lien is ten years from the date of recordation and indexing, unless the judgment becomes dormant. It is important to note that the underlying judgment must be final and not interlocutory. However, in cases where the judgment is being appealed or a supersedeas bond has been filed, it is still permissible to file an abstract based on a final judgment. Furthermore, if a judgment creditor has taken the necessary steps to obtain a lien before the judgment is appealed, the fact of appeal will not nullify the effect of those steps in the event of affirmance. These rules specifically apply to judgments issued by Texas state trial courts and do not extend to the enforcement of judgments from other states and foreign jurisdictions. For the enforcement of judgments from other states or foreign jurisdictions, it is necessary to first domesticate the judgment in Texas to create a lien and subsequently file an abstract of judgment.
Texas Abstract of Judgment
Texas law provides the option for the judge, justice of the peace, clerk of the court, or the authorized representative of the judgment creditor, including their agent, attorney, or assignee, to prepare the abstract of judgment. However, it is important to be aware that the judgment creditor is not allowed to prepare their own abstract in small claims and justice courts. Additionally, abstracts of federal court judgments require the certification provided by the clerk of the court. To abstract your judgment lien in Newton County, Texas, you can visit the County Clerk’s office situated at 115 Court St, Newton, Texas 75966.
When compiling a Texas abstract of judgment, it is essential to include specific information to ensure adherence to legal guidelines. This includes providing the names of the plaintiff and defendant, stating the defendant’s birthdate (if known to the clerk of justice), disclosing the last three numbers of the defendant’s driver’s license and social security number (if available), indicating the suit number in which the judgment was rendered, specifying the defendant’s address or providing details about citation and the date and place of service if the address is not mentioned in the suit, mentioning the date on which the judgment was rendered, accurately stating the amount awarded and the outstanding balance, addressing any child support arrearage, highlighting the interest rate specified in the judgment, and including the mailing address for each plaintiff or judgment creditor. Failure to include the mailing address may result in the imposition of a penalty filing fee. Additionally, the abstract of judgment must be verified by the creditor’s attorney, and unsworn declarations are not admissible.
Recordation of Judgment Liens Abstract
When the debtor possesses real property, it is crucial to record the abstract of judgment in Newton County. The abstract is received by the Newton County clerk, who diligently records it in the county’s real property records, ensuring accurate documentation of the recordation date and time. Simultaneously, the clerk is obligated to include the abstract in the alphabetical index to the real property records, displaying the names of each plaintiff and defendant in the judgment, as well as the page number where the abstract is officially recorded.
Abstracts of Domesticated Judgment Liens.
The Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act and the Uniform Foreign-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act dictate that judgments filed under these Acts carry the same enforceability as judgments filed in the court where they originated. The foreign judgment holder must fulfill the lien requirements when seeking to domesticate the judgment in Texas.
Property To Which Lien Attaches Non-Exempt Real Property
Newton County is the location where the judgment lien attaches to all nonexempt real property owned by the defendant and documented in the county.
Keeping the Judgment and Judgment Lien Alive
1. Non-governmental Judgments
The judgment lien continues to hold for a period of 10 years from the date of recording and indexing the abstract, except in the event of dormancy, which terminates the lien. Therefore, it is imperative to (1) ensure the judgment remains active and (2) acquire and record a new abstract of judgment. Dormancy occurs if a writ of execution is not issued within 10 years after the judgment is rendered. To revive the judgment, one can utilize scire facias or initiate an action of debt within two years from the date the judgment becomes dormant.
2. State or State Agency Judgments.
Judgments issued by the state or a state agency do not lose their legal validity and retain their enforceability. A duly filed abstract of judgment creates a lien that remains in effect for 20 years from the date of filing, and the lien can be renewed for an additional 20-year period by filing a renewed abstract of judgment.
3. Political Subdivisions.
Dormancy statutes can result in the dormancy of judgments concerning political subdivisions, but the revival statute (Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 31.006) specifically states that political subdivisions are not barred by the statute of limitations. Consequently, judgments of political subdivisions can be revived at any time, extending beyond the two-year dormancy period.
4. Child Support Judgments.
Subsection (c) of § 34.001 of the Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code carves out a specific provision that exempts judgments pertaining to child support from the dormancy statute, encompassing all such judgments irrespective of their date of rendering.
Property Subject to and Exempt from Execution.
1. Property Subject to Execution.
The execution holds the right to levy the judgment debtor’s property, except if it is protected by the constitution, statute, or other legal provisions. 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, such as stamps, coins, etc.; d. Stocks, bonds, notes, and other investments; e. f. Airplanes. Corporations do not possess any exempt property.
2. Property Exempt from Execution.
The execution process exempts property falling within the following categories, whether it pertains to a family or a single adult: a) The homestead b) Personal property of various categories as outlined by statute, up to a combined fair market value of $100,000.00 for families or $50,000.00 for single adults without family affiliation c) Current wages for personal services (excluding child support) and unpaid commissions, 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 sufficient to fulfill the execution h) Assets held by 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) Certain consigned artwork.
WRITS OF GARNISHMENT.
The post-judgment garnishment procedure offers a recourse for a judgment creditor to investigate the connection between a third party and the judgment debtor, with the objective of determining if there are any outstanding funds or property owed to the debtor. In the event of discovering such debts, the creditor (garnishor) can obtain a garnishment judgment, instructing the third party (garnishee) to make payments to the garnishor in lieu of the judgment debtor.
Requirements to Issue
After a judgment is obtained, garnishment can be pursued only if the following conditions are met: Firstly, the creditor must hold 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, based on their knowledge, that the judgment debtor does not possess enough property subject to execution in Texas to satisfy the judgment.
Procedure for Securing Issuance Jurisdiction and parties
When initiating a post-judgment garnishment action, it is important to understand that it constitutes a separate legal proceeding from the main case it intends to enforce. The third-party garnishee should be named as the defendant, as it involves an ancillary lawsuit. The application for post-judgment garnishment should be filed in the same court that rendered the judgment to be collected, but under a different cause number.
Service of the writ of garnishment/notice to judgment debtor.
The garnishee must receive the writ of garnishment in order to initiate the garnishment process. While the judgment defendant is not 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. Additionally, 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 inform a reasonably attentive person. Failure to provide proper notice to the judgment debtor regarding the garnishment renders any judgment, except for one dissolving the writ, void.
Banks as Garnishees for Writs of Garnishment
The address designated as the registered agent of the financial institution in its registration statement, as filed with the Secretary of State pursuant to Section 201.102 or 201.103 of the Finance Code, serves as the designated delivery location for garnishment writs served on garnishee banks. Out-of-state financial institutions seeking registration with the Secretary of State must adhere to the state’s laws 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 have the flexibility to appoint an agent for process by submitting a statement to the Secretary of State under Section 201.103.
The officer assigned to execute a writ of garnishment must make a return that adheres to the citation rules, as specified in Tex. R. Civ. P. 663. It is crucial for the judgment creditor to review the return thoroughly before obtaining a garnishment judgment, particularly in the case of a default judgment. Returns in garnishment proceedings are governed by the same rules as other citations. Courts have invalidated returns for their failure to indicate the method of service on a corporate garnishee or the place of service, deeming them fatally defective.
Forms for the form and Practical Procedure
When locating a bank account or other debt owed by the judgment debtor that is subject to garnishment and found to be cost-effective, the next step is to file an Application for Garnishment with a supporting affidavit. The affidavit, signed by the judgment creditor’s attorney, should encompass the necessary information for the application, including the original suit and judgment details, credits to the judgment, the proper garnishee name, officers for service, address for service, and if available, account names and numbers.
Busby and Associates are ready to assist you in collecting your Texas judgment. With their contingency-based services, you can avoid upfront expenses. Judgments from other states with a Texas-based judgment debtor are carefully examined on a case-by-case basis, with the possibility of a retainer being necessary. Furthermore, in Newton County, they have the expertise to help you garnish a bank account or financial institution, ensuring the recovery of the owed amount.