What is a Writ of Execution?
A writ of execution is an order granted by a court in an attempt to fulfill a monetary judgment attained by a plaintiff. When a court issues a writ of execution, a court usually will order a sheriff or another similar official to take ownership of property owned by a debtor from a judgment. The property is then often sold in a sheriff's sale and the proceeds of the sale are given to the plaintiff in either a partial or a full satisfaction of the court’s judgment. A writ of execution is often considered more preferable for the sheriff simply to take possession over money from the bank account of the defendant. If the debtor from the judgment owns any real property, the judgment creditor may record the writ of execution in order to freeze or hold the title until the execution is fully satisfied.
Typically, a writ of execution is not necessary for a defendant who voluntarily pays verdicts against themselves. However, there are some defendants who ignore the judgments against them, and therefore force plaintiffs to obtain writs of execution from a judge in order to actually enforce the judgments.
In the United States, only certain are subject to the writ of execution. An example of an exempt asset is Social Security income that is residing within a bank account. These assets are exempt from a levy that could be placed on the bank account. Additionally, many states protect Individual Retirement Accounts from being subject to a writ of execution along with unemployment income, but the quantity that is exempt can be limited.