You must give the Sheriff specific instructions regarding the type of levy you want. (If there is an Attorney of Record, ALL INSTRUCTIONS MUST BE SIGNED BY THE ATTORNEY OF RECORD PER CCP 488.030, 687.010). You must know where the defendant works, banks, has his business, or the year and make of his vehicle.
Order For Examination
If you are unaware of the defendant's assets or the location of these assets you may return to the court of judgment and request an ORDER FOR EXAMINATION. This order, after being served on the defendant by the Sheriff requires the defendant to appear in court to answer questions about his assets. If he does not appear the court will issue a warrant for his arrest. Your instructions for service must contain the defendant's address and the attorney of records signature.
Our office will need 1 copy of the Order for Appearance for service on each defendant; a check or money order payable to the Orange County Sheriff; and a cover letter of instruction stating who, what and where to serve the papers. As these documents must be served no later than 10 days prior to the hearing, please submit the papers for service at least 30 days prior to the court hearing for service. The more time provided would increase our chances of serving the defendant.
Earnings Withholding Order
An EARNINGS WITHHOLDING ORDER requires an employer to send to the Sheriff approximately 25% of the defendant's net earnings each payday. The employer has 15 days after being served to send an answer to the Sheriff's Department regarding the defendant's employment and pay status.. The defendant is entitled to file a "Claim of Exemption" for return of withheld monies and relief from the order. If a Claim of Exemption is filed, you may file an opposition to this claim. Instructions for filing an opposition are contained in the Notice of Filing of Claim of Exemption that will be mailed if such a claim is filed. Our office does not issue checks directly; they are requested from the O.C. Auditor. You will receive a check approximately 1 week to 10 days from the date we request it. Pursuant to government Code 26746, a $12.00 processing Fee shall be charged for each disbursement of monies collected under a writ execution.
A defendant's bank account may be garnished. Instructions to the Sheriff must include the name of the bank and the address. It is important that the name on the account be exactly the same as on the judgment. Though not necessary, the account number will assist the bank in locating the account. The defendant may file a "Claim of Exemption" for return of monies. If a Claim of Exemption is filed, you may file an opposition to this claim. Instructions for filing an opposition are contained in the notice of filing of Claim of Exemption that will be mailed if such a claim is filed. Upon receipt of the answer from the garnishee, a copy will be mailed to you. If the bank submits payment, our office will make a payment to you within 30 days from the date of levy. Our office does not issue checks directly; they are requested from the O.C. Auditor. You will receive a check approximately 1 week to 20 days from the date we request it. A $12.00 processing Fee shall be charged for each disbursement of monies collected under a writ of execution.
Fee: 1,800.00 (Large Vehicles may require additional deposit)
A vehicle registered to and in the possession of the defendant may be levied upon and sold at auction by the Sheriff. Your instructions must state the make, year and license number of the vehicle, and the address where it can be found. The legal owner may file a claim on the vehicle. If the vehicle is the only one registered to the defendant, there is an automatic exemption of $2,725.00. This means the bidding at the auction starts at $2,725.00. If the minimum bid is not received, the vehicle is returned to the defendant. The advance deposit of $1,800.00 covers the Fee to seize, have it towed to an impound lot and pay storage Fees. The following is a list of the most common problems that may occur during a vehicle levy:
Legal Owner Payoff:
After we have seized the vehicle our office must contact the legal owner to determine the
amount owing on the vehicle. Storage Fees will continue to accrue during this time. Most new vehicles are heavily financed and any amount owing may need to be satisfied prior to the vehicle being set for sale. Frequently the amount owing is in excess of the sale value of the vehicle.
Low Sale Price:
Buyers of Sheriff sales seldom pay even wholesale price for a vehicle. Vehicles are sold to the highest bidder, even if ridiculously low, and it is possible that the vehicle will be sold for less money than you have invested to have it impounded. You are encouraged to bid on the car yourself, or to find other interested buyers.
Clouded Vehicle Title:
Buyers at a Sheriff's Sale purchase only the debtor's rights, title and interest in the vehicle. We do not usually have the owners certificate to the vehicle and contested title problems are not unusual.
Till Tap Levy
If the defendant owns or is a business that has a "Cash Till" on the premises, you may instruct the Sheriff to execute a TILL TAP LEVY. Monies from the till are removed and paid to you. Sheriff's instructions must give the name and address of the business.
8 HOURS $ 240.00
48 HOURS $1,300.00
OPEN END $3,100.00
If the defendant owns or is a business, you may instruct the Sheriff to execute a KEEPER LEVY. Upon installation of the keeper the business and all assets are under control of the Sheriff, as well as any money. The name on the writ must be the defendant's and he must own the business. Your instructions must give the name of the defendant, the name of the business and the address. If instructed, the Sheriff will take an inventory of the assets on the premises and will arrange for the assets to be moved to storage for the purpose of selling them at public auction. Prior to any move, the keeper must complete an inventory. A written estimate of moving and storage costs is obtained and no move will occur until you deposit with the Sheriff sufficient funds to cover the costs of the move. Taking an inventory and moving the assets to storage is conducted during an OPEN END KEEPER.
You will be informed as soon as we have information regarding your case. In the case of a bank levy or wage garnishment we will mail you a copy of the answer. In the case of a till tap, keeper levy, or vehicle levy our office will contact you by phone.