A Closer Look at Asset Seizures

Asset seizure is a very important component of debt collection law – giving the creditor the right to seize and sell some or all of the debtor’s assets.  Here we take a closer look at how it works…

When a debt collection case is won, an execution is received by the court.  It is at that point where the Sheriff can be directed to seize all or some of the debtor’s assets.  Subject to certain liens, the Sheriff can sell the debtor’s belongings and in turn, the creditor will receive the net proceeds.  There are certain statutory exemptions, but asset seizure can be a strong strategy in debt collection litigation. 

After a judgment has been obtained, we look to seize the highest value assets whether directly-owned by the judgment debtor or non-exempt jointly-owned assets.  The creditor can only go after the debtor’s portion of the asset (i.e. car, house, checking account); therefore the non-debtor of the jointly-owned assets is forced to establish his or her percentage of ownership so it can be exempt from seizure.  Even if the asset is jointly owned and the non-debtor proves ownership, the creditor has the right to place a lien on the asset, which would mean that in the event of a sale or refinancing the creditor could receive monies from the debtor’s equity in the asset.   

There are of course certain restrictions from asset seizure, such as social security benefits.  In order to completely know your rights within the spectrum of asset seizures, hire an aggressive, knowledgeable attorney who has a proven track record of success in debt collection litigation.  Hire the law offices of Alan M. Cohen!  Call (508) 620-6900 or email alanmcohen@collections-law.com for a consultation or for more information.