Texas Writs of Garnishment to Collect Judgment Liens from Terry County, Texas
Looking for reliable judgment-related assistance in Terry County, Texas? Turn to Busby & Associates. Our team of skilled attorneys is experienced in defending, collecting, and enforcing judgments. While we primarily focus on garnishing bank accounts and financial institutions, we also provide services as consumer bankruptcy, family law, and divorce lawyers. This includes representing both obligors and obligees involved in child support lien cases and assisting with collections prosecution and defense. Additionally, we have expertise in domesticating foreign child support liens specific to Terry County. If you’re a judgment creditor struggling to receive payment or need help with a civil matter, especially if the debtor resides in Terry County, contact us. We will guide you through the process and help you collect your judgment effectively.
Texas Judgment liens in Terry County
A judgment lien, when properly established, serves as a lien on all nonexempt real property owned by the judgment debtor in Terry County. To create a judgment lien, it is essential to accurately record and index an abstract of judgment. Each county where the judgment lien is sought must receive a filed copy of the abstract of judgment. The validity of the lien spans ten years from the date of recordation and indexing, unless the judgment becomes dormant. Notably, the judgment underlying the lien must be final and not interlocutory. Even if the judgment is being appealed or a supersedeas bond has been filed, it is possible to file an abstract of judgment based on the final judgment. Moreover, if the judgment creditor has taken the necessary steps to establish the lien before the judgment is appealed, the fact of appeal will not diminish the effectiveness of those steps in the event of affirmance. These rules specifically pertain to judgments issued by Texas state trial courts and do not encompass the enforcement of judgments from other states and foreign jurisdictions. To enforce such judgments, it is required to first domesticate the judgment in Texas to create a lien, followed by the filing of an abstract of judgment.
Texas Abstract of Judgment
In Texas, individuals authorized to prepare the abstract of judgment include 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, it is important to note that in small claims and justice courts, the judgment creditor is not allowed to prepare their own abstract. Additionally, abstracts of federal court judgments require the certificate of the clerk of the court. If you have a judgment lien in Terry County, Texas, you can abstract it at the County Clerk’s office located at 500 W Main St, Brownfield, Texas 79316.
To ensure compliance with Texas regulations, an abstract of judgment in Texas must contain specific information. This includes the names of the plaintiff and defendant, the birthdate of the defendant (if known 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 accessible), the suit number in which the judgment was rendered, the defendant’s address or, if not indicated in the suit, the nature of citation and the date and place of citation service, the date of judgment, the amount for which the judgment was rendered and the remaining balance, any child support arrearage, the interest rate specified in the judgment, and the mailing address for each plaintiff or judgment creditor. Please note that including the mailing address is crucial to avoid 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 permissible.
Recordation of Judgment Liens Abstract
Terry County becomes the designated jurisdiction for recording the abstract of judgment when the debtor has real property there. The abstract is delivered to the Terry County clerk, who proceeds to record it meticulously in the county’s real property records, making careful note of the date and time of recordation. Moreover, the clerk is required to include the abstract in the alphabetical index to the real property records, providing a comprehensive listing of the names of each plaintiff and defendant in the judgment and the corresponding page number where the abstract is officially recorded.
Abstracts of Domesticated Judgment Liens.
Under the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act and the Uniform Foreign-Country Money Judgments Recognition Act, foreign judgments can be enforced in Texas with the same level of enforceability as judgments filed in the originating court. The foreign judgment holder must satisfy the lien requirements to successfully domesticate the judgment in Texas.
Property To Which Lien Attaches Non-Exempt Real Property
The defendant’s nonexempt real property recorded in Terry County is affected by the judgment lien that applies to all properties.
Keeping the Judgment and Judgment Lien Alive
1. Non-governmental Judgments
The judgment lien holds its enforceability for a period of 10 years following the recording and indexing of the abstract, unless it becomes dormant. Hence, it is necessary to (1) keep the judgment alive and (2) obtain and record a new abstract of judgment to maintain the validity 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 do not become dormant and retain their legal validity. When an abstract of judgment is properly filed, it establishes 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.
While judgments of political subdivisions can go dormant under the dormancy statutes, the revival statute (Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code § 31.006) states that the political subdivision is not bound by the statute of limitations. Therefore, judgments of political subdivisions can be revived at any time, not just within two years of dormancy.
4. Child Support Judgments.
Subsection (c) of § 34.001 of the Civ. Prac. & Rem. Code contains a specific provision that carves out judgments concerning child support from the dormancy statute, encompassing all such judgments regardless of when they were rendered.
Property Subject to and Exempt from Execution.
1. Property Subject to Execution.
Unless specifically exempted by constitutional provisions, statutes, or any other applicable legal provisions, the execution retains the authority to seize the judgment debtor’s property. Generally, the following types of property are not exempted: a. Cash on hand or in checking or savings accounts; b. Pleasure boats along with their motors and trailers; c. Collections comprising stamps, coins, etc.; d. Stocks, bonds, notes, and other investments; e. f. Airplanes. Corporations do not enjoy any exemption for their property.
2. Property Exempt from Execution.
The following categories of property are exempt from execution, regardless of whether they pertain to a family or a single adult: a) The homestead b) Personal property falling under specified statutory 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, limited to 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 adequate 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) Designated savings plans, including retirement benefits and health savings plans k) College Savings Plans l) Certain consigned artwork.
WRITS OF GARNISHMENT.
By means of the post-judgment garnishment procedure, a judgment creditor gains the ability to investigate whether a third party owes any funds or property to the judgment debtor. In the presence of such debts, the creditor (garnishor) can obtain a garnishment judgment, compelling the third party (garnishee) to transfer payments to the garnishor rather than the judgment debtor.
Requirements to Issue
Garnishment is an available option subsequent to the attainment of a judgment, subject to certain requirements. These requirements are as follows: a) 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. b) The debtor must not have filed an approved supersedeas bond to suspend execution on the judgment. c) The creditor must declare, based on their knowledge, that the judgment debtor does not have in their possession in Texas enough property subject to execution to satisfy the judgment.
Procedure for Securing Issuance Jurisdiction and parties
Keep in mind that a post-judgment garnishment action constitutes a separate legal action apart from the main case it aims to enforce. The third-party garnishee should be identified as the defendant, underscoring their role in this ancillary litigation. File the application for post-judgment garnishment in the same court that issued the judgment, utilizing a distinct cause number.
Service of the writ of garnishment/notice to judgment debtor.
The garnishee must receive the writ of garnishment to commence the garnishment process, while the judgment defendant, though not an essential party, must promptly receive a copy of the writ of garnishment, the application, accompanying affidavits, and court orders after the garnishee has been served. Furthermore, it is imperative that the copy of the writ served to the defendant includes its contents in 12-point type and is presented in a manner designed 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, null and void.
Banks as Garnishees for Writs of Garnishment
To ensure effective delivery, garnishment writs served on garnishee banks should be directed to the address designated as the registered agent of the financial institution in its registration statement filed with the Secretary of State, as set forth under either Section 201.102 or 201.103 of the Finance Code. Out-of-state financial institutions must comply with the state’s laws governing foreign corporations conducting business in the state, including the designation of an agent for process under Section 201.102 when applying for registration with the Secretary of State. 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.
Pursuant to Tex. R. Civ. P. 663, the officer responsible for executing a writ of garnishment must file a return that complies with the citation regulations. It is prudent for the judgment creditor to carefully examine the return before obtaining a garnishment judgment, particularly if it is a default judgment. Returns in garnishment proceedings are subject to the rules governing citations in general. Courts have invalidated returns when they do not reveal the method and place of service on a corporate garnishee.
Forms for the form and Practical Procedure
When a bank account or other debt owed by the judgment debtor subject to garnishment is located and it is determined that sufficient funds are involved to make it cost-effective, filing an Application For Garnishment with a supporting affidavit is the next step. The supporting affidavit, signed by the judgment creditor’s attorney, should contain the required information for the application, including details of the original lawsuit and judgment, any credits applied to the judgment, the accurate garnishee name, officers for service, service address, and, if available, account names and numbers.
Looking for professional support in collecting your judgment in Texas? Turn to Busby and Associates for assistance. With their contingency-based services, there’s no need to worry about upfront payments. Judgments from other states wherein the judgment debtor is in Texas are considered on a case-by-case basis, usually involving a retainer. Additionally, if the judgment debtor and/or the judgment is in Terry County, they have the expertise to help you garnish a bank account or financial institution, ensuring effective collection.