(1) When any judgment creditor holds an unsatisfied judgment or judgment lien obtained under chapter 55, the judgment creditor may file a motion and an affidavit so stating, identifying, if applicable, the issuing court, the case number, and the unsatisfied amount of the judgment or judgment lien, including accrued costs and interest, and stating that the execution is valid and outstanding, and thereupon the judgment creditor is entitled to these proceedings supplementary to execution.
(2) The judgment creditor shall, in the motion described in subsection (1) or in a supplemental affidavit, describe any property of the judgment debtor not exempt from execution in the hands of any person or any property, debt, or other obligation due to the judgment debtor which may be applied toward the satisfaction of the judgment. Upon filing of the motion and affidavits that property of the judgment debtor, or any debt, or other obligation due to the judgment debtor in the custody or control of any other person may be applied to satisfy the judgment, then the court shall issue a Notice to Appear. The Notice to Appear shall direct such person to file an affidavit, as provided in s. 56.16, with the court by a date certain, which date shall not be less than 7 business days from the date of service of the Notice to Appear, stating why the property, debt, or other obligation should not be applied to satisfy the judgment. For good cause shown, the court may shorten the time for serving an affidavit. The Notice to Appear must describe with reasonable particularity the property, debt, or other obligation that may be available to satisfy the judgment, must provide such person with the opportunity to present defenses, and must indicate that discovery as provided under the rules of civil procedure is available and that there is a right to a jury trial as provided in s. 56.18. The Notice to Appear must be served as provided for in chapter 48. A responding affidavit must raise any fact or defense opposing application of the property described in the Notice to Appear to satisfy the judgment, including legal defenses, such as lack of personal jurisdiction. Legal defenses need not be filed under oath but must be served contemporaneously with the affidavit.
(3)(a) When, within 1 year before the service of process on the judgment debtor in the original proceeding or action, the judgment debtor has had title to, or paid the purchase price of, any personal property to which the judgment debtor’s spouse, any relative, or any person on confidential terms with the judgment debtor claims title and right of possession, the judgment debtor has the burden of proof to establish that such transfer or gift was not made to delay, hinder, or defraud creditors.
(b) When any gift, transfer, assignment or other conveyance of personal property has been made or contrived by the judgment debtor to delay, hinder, or defraud creditors, the court shall order the gift, transfer, assignment or other conveyance to be void and direct the sheriff to take the property to satisfy the execution. This does not authorize seizure of property exempted from levy and sale under execution or property which has passed to a bona fide purchaser for value and without notice. Any person aggrieved by the levy or Notice to Appear may proceed under ss. 56.16-56.20.
(4) At any time the court may refer the proceeding to a general or special magistrate who may be directed to report findings of law or fact, or both. The general or special magistrate has all the powers thereof, including the power to issue subpoena, and shall be paid the fees provided by the court.
(5) A party or a witness examined under these provisions is not excused from answering a question on the ground that the answer will tend to show him or her guilty of the commission of a fraud, or prove that he or she has been a party or privy to, or knowing of a conveyance, assignment, transfer, or other disposition of property for any purpose, or that the party or witness or another person claims to have title as against the judgment debtor or to hold property derived from or through the judgment debtor, or to be discharged from the payment of a debt which was due to the judgment debtor or to a person on behalf of the judgment debtor. An answer cannot be used as evidence against the person so answering in any criminal proceeding.
(6) The court may order any property of the judgment debtor, not exempt from execution, or any property, debt, or other obligation due to the judgment debtor, in the hands of or under the control of any person subject to the Notice to Appear, to be levied upon and applied toward the satisfaction of the judgment debt. The court may enter any orders, judgments, or writs required to carry out the purpose of this section, including those orders necessary or proper to subject property or property rights of any judgment debtor to execution, and including entry of money judgments as provided in ss. 56.16-56.19 against any person to whom a Notice to Appear has been directed and over whom the court obtained personal jurisdiction irrespective of whether such person has retained the property, subject to applicable principles of equity, and in accordance with chapters 76 and 77 and all applicable rules of civil procedure. Sections 56.16-56.20 apply to any order issued under this subsection.
(7) Any person failing to obey any order issued under this section by a judge or general or special magistrate or failing to attend in response to a subpoena served on him or her may be held in contempt.
(8) Costs for proceedings supplementary shall be taxed against the judgment debtor as well as all other incidental costs determined to be reasonable and just by the court including, but not limited to, docketing the execution, sheriff’s service fees, and court reporter’s fees. Reasonable attorney fees may be taxed against the judgment debtor.
(9) The court may entertain claims concerning the judgment debtor’s assets brought under chapter 726 and enter any order or judgment, including a money judgment against any initial or subsequent transferee, in connection therewith, irrespective of whether the transferee has retained the property. Claims under chapter 726 brought under this section shall be initiated by a supplemental complaint and served as provided by the rules of civil procedure, and the claims under the supplemental complaint are subject to chapter 726 and the rules of civil procedure. The clerk of the court shall docket a supplemental proceeding under the same case number assigned to the original complaint filed by the judgment creditor or the case number assigned to a judgment domesticated pursuant to 1s. 55.01, shall assign a separate supplemental proceeding number, and shall assign such supplemental proceeding to the same division and judge assigned to the main case or domesticated judgment.
History.—ss. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, ch. 7842, 1919; CGL 4540-4549; s. 1, ch. 63-144; s. 11, ch. 67-254; s. 1, ch. 72-12; s. 13, ch. 73-334; s. 12, ch. 87-145; s. 309, ch. 95-147; s. 20, ch. 2000-258; s. 53, ch. 2004-11; s. 12, ch. 2005-241; s. 17, ch. 2014-182; s. 18, ch. 2016-33.
1Note.—Section 55.01 relates to general requirements for judgment forms; ss. 55.501-55.509 comprise the Florida Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act.