Read more about the article Nature of Garnishee Proceedings and enforcement of judgment debts in Nigeria.
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Nature of Garnishee Proceedings and enforcement of judgment debts in Nigeria.

Business transactions sometimes do not always go as planned. Many business owners at a point in time find themselves in bad debt and deep financial crisis that becomes impossible to remedy. Once an individual or business outfit runs into bad debt, which the creditor does not want to forfeit or cancel and in essence wants to recover back his debt from the debtor, the most appropriate and recommended legal means to recover the debt is to approach the law court for redress. The creditor usually initiates court action against the debtor for recovery of the loan sum or money owed the creditor and upon obtaining judgment in favour of the creditor, the process of garnishment of account of the judgment debtor is usually set in motion. Thus, garnishee proceeding is initiated by a judgment creditor against a disclosed account of a judgment debtor. The word garnishee is derived from the French word “GARNISH” which simply connotes “to warn”. Put in another way, it is the process by which execution or enforcement of monetary judgment whereby the money belonging to a judgment debtor in the possession of a third party called the Garnishee is attached or seized by a judgment creditor. See the case of UBN Plc v. Boney Marcus Industries Ltd. & Ors. (2005) All FWLR (Pt. 278) 1037 at 1046-1047. Consequently, garnishee proceedings is a second stage of litigation in the recovery of debt after judgment has been obtained and is usually initiated where the judgment debtor refuses to obey or comply with the judgment of the court by not paying the awarded cost to the judgment creditor and most importantly fails to file an appeal against the judgment. Finally, the circumstances under which garnishee proceedings are applicable is that the money must have been due or have accrued to the judgment debtor for it to be liable to garnishment and the judgment debtor has refused to pay. Also of note is that court judgment must have been obtained in favour of the creditor.

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Is it legal to seize another person’s property to offset a debt?

Is it legal to seize another person’s property to offset a debt? The act of detention of a chattel or seizing of property belonging to another and refusing to deliver up the property upon demand by the owner is called “detinue” in law. Thus, detinue is a wrongful detention of a person’s chattel by another which is evidenced by the refusal of the person detaining the property or his agent to deliver up the property upon demand by the owner. This article is based on the case of Labode v. Otubu (2001) 7 NWLR (Pt. 712) 256 at 260.

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