As Atlanta business litigation lawyers, my clients are often faced with responding to garnishment proceedings filed by a plaintiff to recover any assets held by the company on behalf of an employee or customer. Often the client does not realize that in Georgia, the failure of the garnishee (the company served) to respond to the garnishment could result in the judgment against the employee or client to be applied against the company and its own assets for the full amount of the underlying judgment.
In Georgia, if the garnishee does not answer the garnishment with 30 or 45 days depending on whether it is a regular garnishment or a wage garnishment, the underlying judgment becomes a judgment against the company. However, the company then has sixty days to open default to vacate the judgment against it for failure to answer the garnishment.
Obviously, it is always more prudent to respond to the garnishment on time to avoid unnecessary risk and expense. As an Atlanta business litigation lawyers, it is always less expense for the client to avoid additional litigation over issues such as garnishments, especially if the client does not have any assets of the defendant to hold for the plaintiff. For whatever reason, I find that most company’s that have failed to answer are those that never had assets and assumed they therefore did not have to still answer. This is not the case. Prudent responses to any served complaint whether a garnishment or other proceeding is always important, of course, after speaking to and being advised by your company’s attorney.