How Do I Garnish Wages After A Judgment I Won If I Do not Know the Work Address?
You may have to summon the defendant (judgment debtor) to court to answer questions under oath regarding information needed to collect on the judgment. After a judgment is entered against a debtor, the creditor may use various tactics to collect on the judgment. State laws dictate the number of years a creditor may pursue collection on an outstanding judgment; typically, they are 10 to 20 years. Generally, any assets debtors acquire over this time period can be seized or forfeited in satisfaction of an outstanding judgment. Following successful judgment against a defaulting debtor, creditors will usually ask a court for a creditor's hearing, in which the debtor must make a sworn declaration of all assets and property, including exempted property (such as a primary residence up to a certain value, vehicles not used for employment, tools used for employment, some personal effects and household goods, and life insurance/retirement proceeds). Creditors may present a copy of their court judgment, along with a "writ of execution" form, to local law enforcement officials who will "execute" the writ and seize the property.
A judgment creditor may also request that the court issue a writ for garnishment of the debtor's wages. If granted, the court order for garnishment is served directly upon the debtor's employer, who must comply with its terms. Wage garnishment is a legal procedure governed by
state law in which a person’s earnings are required by court order to be withheld by an employer for the payment of a debt and paid directly to the judgment creditor by the debtor's employer. There are different types of garnishments, as defined by state laws, which vary by state. A garnishment may be made on a one-time or continuing basis. Some kinds of income are exempt, which means that they cannot be garnished at all by creditors for consumer debts, including welfare, unemployment, veterans benefits, Social security, workers' compensation, pensions, and child support payments that you receive. For ordinary garnishments (i.e., those not for support, bankruptcy, or any state or federal tax), the weekly amount may not exceed the lesser of two figures: 25 percent of the employee's disposable earnings, or the amount by which an employee's disposable earnings are greater than 30 times the federal minimum wage.
The following are KY Rules of Civil Procedure:
Rule 69.01. Service upon defendants in respect to proceedings for
attachment or writ of possession.
Service of summons, notice and other required papers upon
defendants in respect to proceedings for attachment or writ of
possession shall be made as prescribed in Rule 4, or may be
served by any person authorized to serve a subpoena pursuant to
Rule 45.03, or may be directed by the plaintiff to the defendant
at his last known place of residence by certified mail, return
receipt requested. Expenses shall be recoverable as costs.
Rule 69.02. Post-judgment garnishment — Service — Answer —
Disposition of funds.
(1) Service of post-judgment orders of attachment or
garnishment upon third-party garnishees, such as employers and
financial institutions, shall be served as prescribed in Rule 4
or, at the option of the plaintiff, may be directed by the
plaintiff to the garnishee by regular first class or certified
mail, or may be personally served by any person authorized to
serve a subpoena pursuant to Rule 45.03. Expenses shall be
recoverable as costs.
(2) Upon receiving a post-judgment order of garnishment, the
garnishee shall answer within the time required by Rule 12.01,
and unless otherwise ordered by the court shall make payments
directly to the attorney for the party in whose behalf the order
of garnishment was issued. If such party has no attorney of
record, as, for example, in the instance of a "small claim,"
payments by the garnishee shall be made to the clerk of the
Except for child support arrearages, where wages are
garnisheed, the attorney for the party in whose behalf the order
of wage garnishment was issued, or the clerk of the court if such
party has no attorney of record, shall safely hold the garnisheed
funds in escrow for a period of fifteen (15) days from the
issuance date of the employer's garnishment check. If the debtor
files an objection within that period, the funds shall continue
to be held until the court rules upon the objection. If an
exemption is asserted and a hearing held, the attorney or clerk
of the court shall disburse the garnisheed funds as ordered by
the court. If no exemption is asserted the attorney or clerk of
the court shall after the fifteen (15) day period disburse the
funds to the party in whose behalf the order of garnishment was
Rule 4.01. Summons — Issuance — By whom served.
(1) Upon the filing of the complaint (or other initiating
document) the clerk shall forthwith issue the required summons
and, at the direction of the initiating party, either:
(a) Place a copy of the summons and complaint (or other
initiating document) to be served in an envelope, address the
envelope to the person to be served at the address set forth in
the caption or at the address set forth in written instructions
furnished by the initiating party, affix adequate postage, and
place the sealed envelope in the United States mail as registered
mail or certified mail return receipt requested with instructions
to the delivering postal employee to deliver to the addressee
only and show the address where delivered and the date of
delivery. The clerk shall forthwith enter the facts of mailing on
the docket and make a similar entry when the return receipt is
received by him or her. If the envelope is returned with an
endorsement showing failure of delivery, the clerk shall enter
that fact on the docket. The clerk shall file the return receipt
or returned envelope in the record. Service by registered mail or
certified mail is complete only upon delivery of the envelope.
The return receipt shall be proof of the time, place and manner
of service. To the extent that the United States postal
regulations permit authorized representatives of local, state, or
federal governmental offices to accept and sign for "addressee
only" mail, signature by such authorized representative shall
constitute service on the officer. All postage shall be advanced
by the initiating party and be recoverable as costs; or
(b) Cause the summons and complaint (or other initiating
document), with necessary copies, to be transferred for service
to any person authorized, other than by paragraph (1) of this
Rule, to deliver them, who shall serve the summons and
accompanying documents, and his return endorsed thereon shall be
proof of the time and manner of service.
(2) A summons may be issued for service in any county, against
any person to be served, and separate or additional summons may
be issued against any person to be served at the request of the