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Not My Debt


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#1 legalred

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 12:12 PM

My bank account has been garnished by a debt collector with the debt belonging to my girlfriend.they have taken it all. Can they do that ?. My girlfriend is unemployed at this time and yes she is on the account. None of the moneys in the account belonged to my girlfriend. Can I get my money back if so what do I or we need to do ? Thank You

#2 Guest_FindLaw_Amir_*

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 12:26 PM

Did you receive a notice from the debt collector regarding such garnishment?

#3 legalred

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 12:31 PM

No not yet but the local sheriff call girlfriend stated he had papers for her and she told him she was out of town

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:03 PM

What state is this matter concerning?

#5 legalred

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:25 PM

What state is this matter concerning?

south dakota

#6 pg1067

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:32 PM

My bank account has been garnished by a debt collector with the debt belonging to my girlfriend.they have taken it all. Can they do that ?.


"They" did do it, so it certainly seems that "they" can do it.


My girlfriend is . . . on the account. None of the moneys in the account belonged to my girlfriend. Can I get my money back if so what do I or we need to do ?


Since your girlfriend is "on the account," the account is subject to being garnished to collect a judgment against her. I'm not sure why you would put her name on the account if none of the money in the account is hers. Whether SD has a procedure that would allow you make and attempt to prove that claim is something only a local attorney is going to know. I suggest you seek one out for a consultation ASAP because the time for you to make such a claim is likely very limited.

#7 adjusterjack

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:37 PM

My bank account has been garnished by a debt collector with the debt belonging to my girlfriend.they have taken it all. Can they do that ?. My girlfriend is unemployed at this time and yes she is on the account. None of the moneys in the account belonged to my girlfriend. Can I get my money back if so what do I or we need to do ? Thank You


You haven't said but I'm guessing that her name is on the same account.

If that's the case you will have to petition the court for an order for your funds to be returned. You will have to PROVE, with documentation, what money was yours.

Unfortunately, that's not going to be easy if it's a joint account.

By the way, there is usually some time between when the bank is served and the funds are released to the creditor. If she lied about being out of town just to duck the service then she screwed you.

This is not someone you want to share a bank account with or anything else of a financial nature.

Warning: Legal issues are complicated. Explanations and comments here are simplified and might not fully explain the ramifications of your particular issue. I am not a lawyer. I do not give legal advice. I make comments based on my knowledge and experience. I guarantee nothing. If you act on my comments without the advice of an attorney, you do so at your own risk.


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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:42 PM

You may have a short amount of time to go to court and prove that the money in the account came from an exempt source. If you don't act within that time period, then the bank will turn over the money to the creditor/judgment holder. You may want to contact the bank and ask for a copy of the order regarding garnishment. Also, as the previous poster stated, you may also want to consult with local North Dakota Lawyer ASAP to advise you on how to address this concern. Many lawyers do offer a free consultation.

Best of luck.

#9 legalred

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:52 PM

You haven't said but I'm guessing that her name is on the same account.

If that's the case you will have to petition the court for an order for your funds to be returned. You will have to PROVE, with documentation, what money was yours.

Unfortunately, that's not going to be easy if it's a joint account.

By the way, there is usually some time between when the bank is served and the funds are released to the creditor. If she lied about being out of town just to duck the service then she screwed you.

This is not someone you want to share a bank account with or anything else of a financial nature.

yes we have a joint account and they took the money fri.and the sheriff called mon and she told him that she was not in town so we could know our options before she was served. someone told us that if they cant serve the papers they cant take the money out

#10 Fallen

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 01:57 PM

You haven't indicated what you mean by "papers," but I presume she's been successfully sued and the creditor got a writ for the garnishment.

You need to talk with a lawyer. If this isn't a ton of dough in terms of many thousands and it isn't cost-effective to pursue this, then I'd just tell your girlfriend she needs to sign a promissory note to pay you back within X amount of time. (It goes without saying that you ought to ensure you don't deposit any more money in this account, and also not have any accounts in future to which she has access.)

I'll echo PG's advisory "warning" with a twist: (Many) legal issues are complicated. Explanations and comments here might not fully identify or explain the ramifications of your particular problem. I do not give legal advice as such (and such is impermissible here at any rate). Comments are based on personal knowledge and experience and legal info gleaned over a quarter century, and every state has differing laws on and avenues to address most topics.  If you need legal advice, you need to consult (and pay) a professional so that you may have someone to hold accountable.  Acting on personal and informational advice from a stranger on the internet is a bad idea -- at least not without your own thorough due dilience/research and confirmation as it applies to your situation.  :)


#11 Tax_Counsel

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 02:16 PM

My bank account has been garnished by a debt collector with the debt belonging to my girlfriend.they have taken it all. Can they do that ?. My girlfriend is unemployed at this time and yes she is on the account. None of the moneys in the account belonged to my girlfriend. Can I get my money back if so what do I or we need to do ? Thank You


You might not be able to get it back. That will depend on the North Dakota law on the issue. In at least some jurisdictions, the law is that the judgment creditor may exercise any of the rights that the debtor had in the account. If your girlfriend had the right to withdraw the funds on her own (as is usually the case with joint accounts) then the creditor may do that, too. In that case the funds in the account are fair game for the creditor even though you were the one who put the money in there. You'd need to consult a local civil litigation attorney about that and what, if any, recourse you have.

#12 prose7_2334

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 04:55 PM

Here's the reality of it all

#13 prose7_2334

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 05:00 PM

im sorry i will get bakk to yu

#14 prose7_2334

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 05:24 PM

Technically, any money in the account belongs to who is on the account, and in this case since it is a Joint Account the money is equally shared so, if either of you owe any money to ANYONE, its open season on that account for whoever you owe. This is pretty much contingent on the LAW(S) in your state. I would check your State's Statute of Limitations with respect to Written Contracts
and or Promissary notes there may very well be a Legal Loophole for you two to slide through. Sure, you may be able to bring some form of Civil Suit against your girlfriend, and that's not a clean look for you in the eyes of your family and friends. I guess your last form of recourse, if any would be to just pay it and chalk it up as a lesson learned.

#15 adjusterjack

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 07:54 PM

I would check your State's Statute of Limitations with respect to Written Contracts
and or Promissary notes there may very well be a Legal Loophole for you two to slide through.


In order for a bank account to be levied, the creditor must have already sued and gotten a judgment. Once there is a judgment the statute of limitations on written contracts or promissory notes no longer applies. Judgments are enforceable in South Dakota for 20 years.

Warning: Legal issues are complicated. Explanations and comments here are simplified and might not fully explain the ramifications of your particular issue. I am not a lawyer. I do not give legal advice. I make comments based on my knowledge and experience. I guarantee nothing. If you act on my comments without the advice of an attorney, you do so at your own risk.


#16 adjusterjack

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 08:17 PM

yes we have a joint account and they took the money fri.and the sheriff called mon and she told him that she was not in town so we could know our options before she was served. someone told us that if they cant serve the papers they cant take the money out


I just checked the South Dakota garnishment statute and here's what I've come up with.

The judgment creditor must serve a garnishment affidavit and garnishment summons on the bank. It gives the bank 30 days to answer the the summons.

See 21-18-6 for the summons form:

http://law.justia.co...tatute-21-18-6/

What a bank does upon receipt of such summons is freeze the account pending the timetable for the garnishment process.

When you write "they took the money fri" it's important to figure out who "they" is and what you mean by "took." In other words is the bank holding the money pending the completion of the timetable or has the bank released the money to the judgment creditor.

21-18-10 requires that a copy of the summons and affidavit be served on the defendant (your girlfriend) within 30 days after being served on the bank.

http://law.justia.co...atute-21-18-10/

21-18-11 allows the defendant's copy to be served by certified mail or personally by the sheriff and provides alternatives if those methods are not successful.

http://law.justia.co...atute-21-18-11/

You might be right that they can't take the money until your girlfriend has been served. However, if she thinks ducking process servers and certified mail is going to keep the money away from the creditor, keep in mind that the creditor can serve by publication which means that your girlfriend is served even if she manages to avoid getting the papers in her hand.

You're welcome to read the statutes and see if there is anything in them that might help you.

http://law.justia.co...-21/chapter-18/

But I also suggest that you consult an attorney to see if anything can be done about your money.

Meantime, the longer you wait, the longer you don't have access to your money.

Which is how much, by the way?

Warning: Legal issues are complicated. Explanations and comments here are simplified and might not fully explain the ramifications of your particular issue. I am not a lawyer. I do not give legal advice. I make comments based on my knowledge and experience. I guarantee nothing. If you act on my comments without the advice of an attorney, you do so at your own risk.





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