Circuit Clerk

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Circuit Clerk


Thomas R. Barr image

Elected Official
Thomas R. Barr

tom.barr@courts.mo.gov


Pay by phone during business hours at (417) 868-4187

GARNISHMENT NEWS

New Forms:

Beginning January 1, 2016, the law allows a garnishor to file a continuous garnishment against a judgment debtor. This means the garnishment will be in effect from the date it is served on the garnishee until the judgment is paid in full or the judgment debtor is no longer employed by the garnishee, whichever occurs first. The new forms for both the Request for Garnishment and the Interrogatories to Garnishee are available at the Circuit Clerk’s office located on the second floor of the Judicial Building at 1010 N. Boonville Ave., Springfield, Missouri. You may also obtain the forms on line by going to www.greenecountycourts.org.

If an attorney files a continuous garnishment on behalf of the garnishor, the attorney has the option to request that payments made by the garnishee be sent either directly to that attorney or to the Greene County Circuit Clerk’s office. If a pro se party files a continuous garnishment, payments must be made through the Greene County Circuit Clerk’s office. Pro se parties to not have the option of having the payments made directly to them.

If you opt to file a continuous garnishment, whether you are an attorney or a pro se plaintiff, you will be required to file a Statement of Judgment Balance with the Circuit Clerk’s office every six (6) months, with the first such Statement due six (6) months from the date of service of the garnishment on the garnishee. Copies of the Statement of Judgment Balance are to be served by regular mail on both the garnishee and the judgment debtor. If a Statement is not filed with the Circuit Clerk’s office within fifteen (15) days of the date of service of the garnishment, the court will, upon its own motion, terminate the garnishment without notice to the garnishor. A junior garnishor can also file a motion to terminate the garnishment if the Statement is not filed within the time allowed.

The $10.00 clerk fee still applies to all garnishments filed, including continuous garnishments. This fee needs to be paid simultaneously with the submission of the request for garnishment.

Definitions:

Garnishor – A party to a lawsuit that has obtained a money judgment against another party, and issues a garnishment for collection of said judgment.

Judgment Debtor – A party to a lawsuit that has had a money judgment entered against them, making their wages, bank accounts and other assets subject to garnishment and/or execution.

Garnishee – The employer, bank or other institution that has possession of assets of the judgment debtor (wages, bank accounts, etc.) that are subject to garnishment.

Pro Se – A party representing themselves in a lawsuit without the assistance of an attorney of record.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I see garnishment information online?

Yes, you can use our website www.greenecountycourts.org and click on our link to Case.net. You can view all the information from the case including payments received on garnishments for up to 90 days from date of payment that were issued on or after April 14, 2008.

When do I have to mail in the Interrogatories to garnishee answers and/or money withheld on the garnishment?

You have until 10 days after the "return date" of the garnishment to turn everything in to the Circuit Clerk's office. In the case of a continuous garnishment, the Answers to Interrogatories must be filed with the court within 20 days from the date you were served with the Garnishment.

What is the Sheriff's fee or fee for the garnishment?

The Sheriff's fee in Greene County is $35.00. If the garnishment will be sent to another county or state for service, you will have to call the Sheriff's office in that county to find out their fees for service of a garnishment and what type of payments they accept (personal check, money order, etc.).

I am an employer and the garnishee has the defendant as someone who has been terminated or never worked at this employer. What do I do with the garnishment?

Attached to the Garnishment are Interrogatories to Garnishee. Answer them and return the original to the Circuit Clerks office and a copy to the person who filed the garnishment. Please note what date the defendant was terminated, or state the defendant was never employed by you, in the Answers you file.

As an employer how do I calculate the amount to withhold from the debtor’s check?

Unfortunately we are unable to help you with the calculations due to statute. If you view the back of the garnishment, there are Instructions to the Garnishee that sets out how much you need withhold. If you still have questions after viewing the instructions, you will need to contact your accountant or attorney.

If the debtor has paid the garnishment off, can I stop withholding?

No. Even though the amount that you have withheld from the debtor may equal the amount due shown on the garnishment, the judgment against the debtor may include interest and other fees. Only the Plaintiff or a Judge can release the garnishment. If the debtor has overpaid the debt, they will need to contact the party who filed the garnishment to request a refund of the overpayment. If the garnishor refuses to do so, the debtor may file something with the court requesting a review.

Judgment Creditors/Plaintiffs Please Note:

Once the judgment has been paid in full, you will need to file a Release of Garnishment and a Satisfaction of Judgment with the Court.