The 28th District Court will do everything it can to collect ordered restitution while a defendant is on probation. If, however, resitution remains unpaid after a defendant's probation has been terminated, Michigan’s Crime Victim Rights Act enables a victim to attempt to collect unpaid restitution two different ways:
1. The victim may attempt to garnish the Defendant’s wages, bank account(s), or income tax refund. The victim would use the garnishment court forms created by the State Court Administrative Office (MC 12, MC 13, or MC 52) as found at http://courts.mi.gov/scao/courtforms/
- A garnishment would be filed in this Court in the name of the original criminal case.
- On the garnishment form, the name of the victim would be listed as the “Plaintiff name.”
- All payments are to be made payable to and directed to the Court.
- There is no court filing fee.
- The judgment (for purposes of garnishment) expires when the restitution is paid in full.
- Payments that are received at the Court will be forwarded to the victim.
2. The victim may also file a Notice of Judgment Lien on any real property the Defendant may have (using court form MC 94).
- The Notice of Judgment Lien is filed in this Court in the name of the original criminal case.
- The name of the victim would be listed as the “Judgment creditor’s name”. There is no filing fee with the court.
- After filing the form with this Court, the victim must record the Notice of Judgment Lien with the county register of deeds where the Defendant’s property is located.
- The victim will have to pay the statutory recording fee with the county register of deeds.
- The first lien will expire in 5 years and may be renewed once.
In order to ensure that the court records are complete, the victim is requested to have the Defendant pay the money to the Court rather than directly to the victim. The Court will then forward the money to the victim.
Court officials are not allowed to give legal advice. A person choosing to pursue any of these civil courses of action may wish to first consult with the prosecuting attorney, city attorney, or a private attorney.