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Law Pro
Law Pro, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 24645
Experience:  20 years experience in consumer advocacy, debt collection violations, contracts, construction
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I was recently awarded a Default Judgement against my tenants

Resolved Question:

I was recently awarded a Default Judgement against my tenants in my house in Mississippi for $3500. for non payment of rent. How can I collect some or all of my money. They seem to be having health problems now and I believe that they may still be living in my house. They were served notice to vacate by the Sheriff's Department, but may still be there. I live in California.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Law Pro replied 1 year ago.

Law Pro :

Hi. Thank you for asking for me.

Law Pro :

When were they served with the notice to vacate by the Sheriff?

Customer:

About three and half weeks ago. I recently texted wife to ask why the keys had not been returned to my sister and she replied that her husband was in the hospital, but she would drop off the next day, of which she did not. I have asked my sister to go down and see if they have moved their belongings. My sister said that there is still an old truck parked there, but she has not seen them.

Law Pro :

If a judgment is entered against the tenant and becomes final (for example, if they do not appeal or if they lose on appeal), and they do not move out, the court will issue a writ of possession to the landlord. The landlord can deliver this legal document to the sheriff, who will then forcibly evict you from the rental unit if the tenant doesn't leave promptly.
Before evicting the tenant, the sheriff will serve them with a copy of the writ of possession. The writ of possession instructs them that they must move out by the end of the fifth day after the writ is served on them, and that if they do not move out, the sheriff will remove them from the rental unit and place the landlord in possession of it. The cost of serving the writ of possession will be added to the other costs of the suit that the landlord will collect from them.
After the tenant(s) served with the writ of possession, they have five days to move. If they have not moved by the end of the fifth day, the sheriff will return and physically remove them.

Law Pro :

If the tenant's belongings are still in the rental unit, the sheriff may either remove them or have them stored by the landlord, who can charge the ex-tenant reasonable storage fees. If the ex-tenant does not reclaim these belongings within 18 days, the landlord can mail the tenant a notice to pick them up, and then can either sell them at auction or keep them (if their value is less than $300). If the sheriff forcibly evicts the tenant, the sheriff’s cost will also be added to the judgment, which the landlord can collect from the tenant.

Customer:

I keep hearing about collecting from the tenant, if they have not paid the rent, how can I collect anything else? I still have not received any money from the past due rents. What can I do to collect at least some of my money? Do the courts have to do something, if I was awarded judment or do I have to do something. Is there a way to attach something to any monies that they may receive in the future, etc.

Customer:

I don't see an answer to the above question.

Law Pro :

If you have a judgment against the tenant - then you can execute against that judgment.

Law Pro :

Here's a link to help you enforce or execute on the judgment: http://www.occourts.org/self-help/smallclaims/collectingthejudgment.html

Law Pro :

You can garnish their wages and/or attach their bank accounts - those are the two easiest and best ways to get your money that they owe you.

Law Pro :

You can tell the Sheriff to take wages if you know where the judgment debtor works. An Earnings Withholding Order tells the judgment debtor’s employer to give the Sheriff a portion of what they earn until the judgment is paid. The standard portion withheld is 25% of the net (after-tax) pay. The sheriff will give you the money.


You must:




      Civil Division Writs & Abstracts Unit





      XXXXX/ul>




    You will need to know the name and address of the employer of the judgment debtor so that the Sheriff can serve them with the forms. The employer must then respond to the Sheriff within 15 days confirming that the judgment debtor works there and how frequently they are paid.


    The judgment debtor may challenge the seizure of their wages. For more information, see section "Making Payment/Failure to Make Payment-Defendant."


Law Pro :

ou can tell the Sheriff to take money from the bank account and give it to you. Or, you can get the Sheriff to take personal property, such as a vehicle, sell it, and give you the money. You must know the location of the property. The Sheriff’s fees vary greatly depending on the property, ranging from approximately $35.00 to levy (seize) a bank account to $1,800.00 to seize and sell a vehicle. These costs will be added to the amount that the Sheriff collects, but there is no guarantee of collection. There may not be any money in the bank account, or the judgment debtor may owe more on the car than it is worth. You must:



 



      Civil Division Writs & Abstracts Unit


 



      XXXXX/ul>

     


      Westminster, CA 92683
    • Fill out Sheriff Instructions that describe the property and say where it is, and the name and address of the person or business that should get the Notice of Levy (example: name and address of bank).

    • Give the Writ and Sheriff Instructions to the Sheriff, along with their fee.


    The judgment debtor may challenge the seizure of their bank account or personal property. For more information, see the section "Making Payment/Failure To Make Payment - Defendant."

Customer:

Sorry, I forgot to mention that the property is in the state of Mississippi and I live in the state of California.

Law Pro :

Oh, that's different.

Law Pro :

Not alot different though.

Law Pro :

A money judgment generally becomes a lien on the property of the judgment debtor in the county in which it is enrolled, for a period of seven (7) years (Sections 15-1-43, 15-1-47), and may be renewed. (Section 11-7-201.) A judgment creditor is entitled to enforce a judgment by attaching the judgment debtor's real and non-exempt personal property including those that are in the possession of third parties of which the judgment debtor is entitled to immediate possession. Although Mississippi statutes permit wage garnishment, the amount permitted to be garnished generally may not exceed twenty-five percent (25%) of the debtor's disposable income for a workweek. (Section 85-3-4.)

Law Pro :

After winning a judgment in Mississippi, creditors must obtain a writ of execution from the court to levy, or take, your property or assets. Obtaining a writ of execution is also known as "executing judgment." The creditor must specify the property to levy and its location. The sheriff in the Mississippi county in which you reside or where the property to be levied is located delivers the writ and takes the listed property.

Law Pro :

If the tenants are still living there notice the sheriff of the matter and they will physically evict them.

Law Pro, Lawyer
Satisfied Customers: 24645
Experience: 20 years experience in consumer advocacy, debt collection violations, contracts, construction
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