Writ of Garnishment Florida
Florida Wage Garnishment Attorneys
Wage garnishment is a practice where creditors take legal action to seize a portion of a debtor’s wages, bank account funds, or other assets. In the state of Florida, creditors will contact employers for wage garnishment to deduct a specified amount of money from the debtor’s pay each week with a writ of garnishment, forwarded directly to the creditor.
Although the law does not permit wage garnishment in every state, it remains a legal debt collection method to help creditors resolve debts in Florida.
What is a Writ of Garnishment in Florida?
A writ of garnishment in Florida often serves as a valuable collection tool that can help creditors collect money judgments against a debtor. The writ of garnishment enables a judgment creditor to intercept the money owed by a debtor in cases of lines of credit, loans, etc.
To collect money owed to the creditor, they must first obtain a final judgment or order against a debt defendant in court. A judgment is a final order from a Florida state court or a United States District Court in the state of Florida. Before collecting any judgment, creditors must first obtain a certified copy of their final judgment from the Clerk of Court.
Once a creditor enters a judgment, they can begin securing a writ of garnishment in Florida and initiate debt collection processes, including wage garnishment, to collect what a debtor owes them.
How to Secure a Writ of Garnishment in Florida
Florida Statute Chapter 77 states that any person or entity that sues to recover a debt or obtains a judgment in court has the right to a writ of garnishment. When creditors sue to reclaim their rightful property and win, sometimes debtors cannot pay or refuse. In these situations, garnishment is an ideal tool to claim salary or wages, rental income, in addition to bank account funds.
Processes to obtain a writ of garnishment can vary between different counties and jurisdictions in Florida. For this reason, it remains crucial for creditors to check for the procedures followed by the local court.
First, a creditor must file a motion to obtain a writ of garnishment with the court where their legal action remains pending. This motion will state the amount of the judgment. Some judges may also require a hearing to observe arguments from both sides of the case before deciding. In contrast, others may immediately grant or deny the motion without a hearing.
Once the judge grants the motion, the creditor can then file these items with the Clerk of Court:
- A final judgment awarding the creditor the action against the debt defendant
- Motion for a writ of garnishment and a court order granting the motion
- Writ of garnishment
- Attached fees (vary by county and jurisdiction)
Post Writ Actions
The creditor will then receive a copy of the writ signed by the judge and must serve these documents on a garnishee. This may represent an account holder, employer, or anyone that disperses funds, wages, etc., to the debtor.
Creditors must also mail a copy of the writ and a Notice to Defendant of Right Against Garnishment of Wages, Money and Other Property (Florida Statute §77.041) within five business days after issuance of the writ, or three business days after servicing the writ on the garnishee.
A garnishee then has 20 days after service to respond to the creditor. When the creditor receives a response, they have five days to mail a copy of the garnishee’s response and a notice advising the debtor of their 20-day period to attempt to dissolve the writ and garnishment.
Servicing a writ of garnishment in Florida makes garnishees liable for all debts unless the court relieves the debt and judgment. Garnishees must either start making payments or set further hearings with the court to attempt to dispute the wage garnishment.
Wage Garnishment Attorneys in Florida | The Law Offices of Paul A. Humbert, P.L.
Debtors still have rights, even after a creditor initiates wage garnishment procedure. This is why an experienced and skilled attorney remains necessary to achieve the best possible outcome in any debt collection case.
The Law Offices of Paul A. Humbert, P.L. and our attorneys can help creditors in Florida and all over the United States secure a writ of garnishment and ensure a smooth transition to garnish wages and reclaim their rightful property. Reach out to our firm today.