Small Claims Court Judgment Collection?
I sued a person in small claims court. I was awarded a judgment of $500 which includes court costs.
I took my judgment to the bank the defendant uses. I got my money from his checking account.
The defendant wants his money back because he is on Social Security Disability. You can't garnish Social Security to pay a legal judgment he tells me.
I did not garnish his Social Security. I garnished his bank account. He chose to have a bank account.
Can he get his money back from me?
- BobLv 64 years agoFavorite Answer
Do not listen to the morons answering your question. They don't know jack.
This is State dependent. Each state is a bit different.
In California the automatic exemption for direct deposit SS funds is controlled by the Code of Civil Procedure section 704.080.
(b) A deposit account is exempt without making a claim in the following amount:
(2) Two thousand four hundred twenty-five dollars ($2,425) where one depositor is the designated payee of directly deposited social security payments.
(4) Three thousand six hundred fifty dollars ($3,650) where two or more depositors are the designated payees of directly deposited social security payments, unless those depositors are joint payees of directly deposited payments that represent a benefit to only one of the depositors, in which case the exemption under paragraph (2) applies.
You state he wants the money back. Do you have it or did the financial institution file an automatic claim of exemption with the levying officer (sheriff who actually levied the account as you did not physically do it). If yes, you must file a "notice of opposition to claim of exemption.' You will get a court date. be certain to bring the "Memorandum of Garnishee" completed by the bank, sent to sheriff, who sent you a copy. If the memo shows there were funds in excess of the amount listed above, depending on single or joint accounts, then the judge will approve your opposition and forward the completed order to the sheriff.
BUT, you must bring a partially completed "Order Re: Claim of Exemption" along with you to the hearing. The local small claims advisor should be able to get these documents for you to complete.
However, if you have been paid out by the sheriff, then your official response is "pound sand."
BTW you levied the bank, not garnished. A garnishment is for wages.
- RangerLv 74 years ago
You are 100% legal. You garnished the bank account. Totally different from garnishment of SS Benefits.
If you garnished the SS check, you would have presented the Garnishment notice to the SS Administration. The SS Admin would have refused to honor the Garnishment Notice.
Tell him what you did is 100% legal. Then tell him not to contact you again or you will report him to the police for telephonic harassment.
- 4 years ago
That isn't garnishing SS, it's levying an account. Two different things. Once in account, the source is irrelevant. No, he cannot get his money back.
- Beverly SLv 74 years ago
Yes. You cannot take social security money for a judgment. If that is his only income he is judgment proof.