Texas Writs of Garnishment to Collect Judgment Liens from San Jacinto County, Texas
Seeking professional guidance for judgment-related matters in San Jacinto County, Texas? Look no further than Busby & Associates. Our skilled team of attorneys is experienced in defending, collecting, and enforcing judgments, placing a particular emphasis on garnishing bank accounts and financial institutions. As experienced consumer bankruptcy, family law, and divorce lawyers, we also provide comprehensive support to both obligors and obligees involved in child support lien cases. Furthermore, we possess specialized knowledge in the domestication of foreign child support liens specific to San Jacinto County, Texas. If you’re a judgment creditor struggling to secure payment, contact us today. We’ll offer tailored advice and support to help you successfully collect your judgment.
Texas Judgment liens in San Jacinto County
In San Jacinto County, a judgment lien properly fixed serves as a lien on all nonexempt real property owned by the judgment debtor. To create a judgment lien, it is necessary to accurately record and index an abstract of judgment. The abstract of judgment must be filed in each county where the judgment lien is to be established. The lien remains valid for ten years from the date of recordation and indexing, unless the judgment becomes dormant. The judgment on which the lien is based must be final and not interlocutory. However, if the judgment is being appealed or a supersedeas bond has been filed, an abstract of judgment can still be filed based on the final judgment. Moreover, if a judgment creditor has taken the required steps to obtain a lien before the judgment is appealed, the fact of appeal will not negate the effect of those steps in the event of affirmance. These rules apply specifically to Texas state trial court judgments and do not encompass the enforcement of judgments from other states and foreign jurisdictions. To enforce judgments from other states or foreign jurisdictions, it is necessary to first domesticate the judgment in Texas to create a lien, and subsequently, an abstract of judgment can be filed.
Texas Abstract of Judgment
Texas grants the judge, justice of the peace, clerk of the court, or the authorized representative of the judgment creditor, including their agent, attorney, or assignee, the authority to prepare the abstract of judgment for judgments rendered in all but small claims and justice courts. However, in small claims and justice courts, the judgment creditor is not permitted to prepare their own abstract. Additionally, abstracts of federal court judgments require the certificate of the clerk of the court. If you are in San Jacinto County, Texas, you can abstract your judgment lien at the County Clerk’s office located at 1 TX-150, Coldspring, Texas 77331.
In the case of a Texas abstract of judgment, it is essential to include specific details that satisfy legal requirements. These details comprise the names of both the plaintiff and defendant, the birthdate of the defendant (if accessible to the clerk of justice), the last three digits of the defendant’s driver’s license (if available), the last three digits of the defendant’s social security number (if obtainable), the suit number associated with the judgment, the defendant’s address (or, if undisclosed, the nature of citation and the date and place of citation service), the date on which the judgment was rendered, the awarded amount and the remaining balance, any outstanding child support arrearage, the interest rate specified in the judgment, and the mailing address for each plaintiff or judgment creditor. It is important to note that failure to include the mailing address may result in the imposition of a penalty filing fee. Furthermore, the abstract of judgment must be verified by the creditor’s attorney, and the use of unsworn declarations is not permissible.
Recordation of Judgment Liens Abstract
The abstract of judgment should be recorded exclusively in San Jacinto County when the debtor has real property. The abstract is submitted to the San Jacinto County clerk, who diligently records it in the county’s real property records, ensuring accurate documentation of the recordation date and time. Additionally, the clerk is obligated to enter the abstract in the alphabetical index to the real property records, indicating the names of each plaintiff and defendant in the judgment and 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 grant foreign judgments the same enforceability as judgments filed in the originating court, enabling their enforcement in Texas. The foreign judgment holder must adhere to the lien requirements when seeking to domesticate the judgment.
Property To Which Lien Attaches Non-Exempt Real Property
The judgment lien takes effect on all nonexempt real property owned by the defendant and located in San Jacinto County, as officially recorded in the county.
Keeping the Judgment and Judgment Lien Alive
1. Non-governmental Judgments
The judgment lien retains its enforceability for a period of 10 years starting from the recording and indexing of the abstract, unless it becomes dormant. Hence, it is necessary to (1) actively preserve the judgment and (2) obtain and record a new abstract of judgment to ensure the continuity of the lien. If the judgment becomes dormant, it can be revived through scire facias or by initiating an action of debt within two years from the date of dormancy.
2. State or State Agency Judgments.
State or state agency judgments retain their enforceability and do not go dormant. When a properly filed abstract of judgment is in place, it creates a lien that lasts for 20 years from the date of filing, and the lien can be renewed for an additional 20 years by filing a renewed abstract of judgment, thereby securing its enforceability for up to 40 years.
3. Political Subdivisions.
Political subdivisions’ judgments may go dormant under dormancy statutes, yet the revival statute (Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 31.006) ensures that the political subdivision is not precluded by the statute of limitations. As a result, political subdivisions can revive judgments at any time, surpassing the two-year dormancy period.
4. Child Support Judgments.
The provision in § 34.001 Subsection (c) of the Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code establishes an exception for child support judgments from the dormancy statute, encompassing all such judgments regardless of when they were granted or issued.
Property Subject to and Exempt from Execution.
1. Property Subject to Execution.
The execution is authorized to seize the judgment debtor’s property unless it is exempted by constitutional provisions, statutes, or 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 associated motors and trailers; c. Collections of items such as stamps, coins, etc.; d. Stocks, bonds, notes, and other investments; e. f. Airplanes. Corporations do not have any protected property.
2. Property Exempt from Execution.
Property falling into the following categories is exempt from execution, whether owned by a family or a single adult: a) The homestead b) Personal property falling under diverse specified categories, with a total fair market value not exceeding $100,000.00 for families or $50,000.00 for single adults without family affiliation c) Current wages earned from personal service (excluding child support) and unpaid commissions, capped at 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, if the purchaser, mortgagee, or trustee identifies other property sufficient to satisfy 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) Consigned artwork that meets specific criteria.
WRITS OF GARNISHMENT.
When seeking to determine whether a third party owes any funds or property to the judgment debtor, a judgment creditor can utilize the post-judgment garnishment process. If any debts are uncovered, the creditor (garnishor) can obtain a garnishment judgment, compelling the third party (garnishee) to pay funds to the garnishor instead of the judgment debtor.
Requirements to Issue
After securing a judgment, garnishment can be sought, provided specific conditions are met. 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 suspend execution on the judgment. Lastly, the creditor must affirm, to the best of their knowledge, that the judgment debtor does not possess sufficient property in Texas subject to execution that can satisfy the judgment.
Procedure for Securing Issuance Jurisdiction and parties
Remember that a post-judgment garnishment action represents a distinct legal suit separate from the main case it intends to enforce. The third-party garnishee should be designated as the defendant, emphasizing their role in this additional litigation. File the application for post-judgment garnishment in the same court that issued the judgment, using a different cause number.
Service of the writ of garnishment/notice to judgment debtor.
To commence the garnishment action, the garnishee must be served with the writ of garnishment. Although the judgment defendant is not a necessary party to the garnishment, 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 serving the garnishee. Furthermore, it is required that the copy of the writ served to the defendant contains its contents in 12-point type and is presented in a manner calculated to advise a reasonably attentive person. Failure to provide adequate notice to the judgment debtor concerning the garnishment renders any judgment, other than one dissolving the writ, void and unenforceable.
Banks as Garnishees for Writs of Garnishment
The address designated as the registered agent of the financial institution, as stated in its registration statement filed with the Secretary of State under either Section 201.102 or 201.103 of the Finance Code, is the designated delivery point for garnishment writs served on garnishee banks. Out-of-state financial institutions seeking registration with the Secretary of State must comply with the state’s laws governing foreign corporations conducting business in the state, including designating an agent for process under Section 201.102. Conversely, Texas financial institutions have the option to file a statement with the Secretary of State appointing an agent for process under Section 201.103.
According to Tex. R. Civ. P. 663, the officer executing a writ of garnishment must provide a return that satisfies the citation requirements. It is recommended for the judgment creditor to carefully inspect the return before seeking a garnishment judgment, especially if it is a default judgment. Returns in garnishment proceedings are subject to the rules governing citations in general. Courts have declared returns fatally defective when they do not specify the method and place of service on a corporate garnishee.
Forms for the form and Practical Procedure
Should you come across a bank account or other debt owed by the judgment debtor that satisfies the requirements for garnishment and is considered cost-effective, proceed by filing an Application for Garnishment along with a supporting affidavit, signed by the judgment creditor’s attorney. Ensure that the affidavit includes all the necessary information for the application, such as details of the original lawsuit and judgment, any credits applied to the judgment, the accurate garnishee name, officers authorized for service, service address, and any available account names and numbers.
Looking for assistance in collecting your Texas judgment? Busby and Associates can help. Their contingency-based services mean no upfront costs for you. Judgments from other states with a Texas-based judgment debtor are evaluated on a case-by-case basis, often requiring a retainer. Additionally, in San Jacinto County, they have the expertise to assist you in garnishing a bank account or financial institution, ensuring the recovery of the owed amount.