Another manner in which a creditor may attempt to collect on a judgment is by levying property.
Levying property means seizing and selling property to satisfy the judgment. The levy is conducted by the sheriff. Both personal and real property can levied. For instance, a vehicle could be seized and sold by the sheriff to satisfy the judgment.
The property seized is subject to exemptions. While the homestead exemption is very generous in Florida, other exemptions are not. The personal property exemption and motor vehicle exemption are only $1,000 each.
The property seized also is subject to the Tenancy by Entirety (TBE) immunity. Generally, property acquired during the marriage is presumed to be owned TBE. Such property may not be used to satisfy a debt owed by only one spouse.
Nevertheless, the proper exemption or TBE immunity must be claimed in order to prevent a levy of exempt property.
Both Chapter 7 and 13 Bankruptcy can stop a creditor from levying property to satisfy a judgment. In addition, judgment liens may be avoided to the extent they impair an exemption. Lastly, Bankruptcy will discharge the personal liability for the debt (subject to a few exceptions).
Brent M. Myer
Attorney at Law