Civil Enforcements Guide: Writ of Enforcement
Registering Your Judgement & Filing a Writ of Enforcement
Once you have decided to proceed with your civil enforcement, the first step is to file your Judgement with the Court of Queen's Bench or with the Provincial Court, depending on where your judgement order originated. The exact procedure for doing this may differ from courthouse to courthouse, so check with the clerks to make sure you are following the correct procedure. Court Judgements are valid for 10 years from the date of the judgement, and may be extended an additional 10 years upon application to the Provincial Court or Court of Queen's Bench.
Filing a Writ of Enforcement
A Writ of Enforcement is a document filed with the Clerk of the Court of Queen's Bench and registered with the Personal Property Registry which entitles you to enforce your judgement and share in the money paid to the Clerk of the Court as a result of garnishment or seizure proceedings against your debtor, including those made by other creditors.
It is important to complete your Writ of Enforcement correctly before submitting it: once your Writ has been filed by the Clerk, it is very difficult to make alterations and most require a court order.
Some changes to the Writ of Enforcement can be made without a court order by filing a Status Update at the Registry. These changes include adding aliases for the debtor, modifying some of the creditor or debtor details, and changes to the amount owing.
You will need four copies of the Writ of Enforcement. When you file your Writ with the Clerk of the Court of Queen's Bench, the Clerk will retain the original and return the three copies to you.
After filing a Writ with the Clerk of the Court, it is then your responsibility to register a copy with the Personal Property Registry. You can do this through any office of an authorized Alberta Registry agent, and at this time there will be fees payable.
Note that registering your Writ with the Personal Property Registry does not affect any land owned by the debtor. To register a claim against land, you must also register your Writ with the Land Titles Office. By registering your Writ with the Land Titles Office, you will ensure that any prospective mortgage or purchase of land will require the judgement is dealt with first.
Status Reports: Keeping Your Writ of Enforcement Active
You must register a Status Report with the Personal Property Registry every two years prior to the expiry of your Writ of Enforcement in order to keep it active. As a creditor, you are also require to file a Status Report whenever you receive payment directly from the debtor outside any funds distributed by the Civil Enforcement Act.
Note that Status Reports allow you to make some changes to your Writ without a court order, including changing information about the debtor or creditor, adding aliases for the debtor, and modifying the amount owing, creditor costs or post-judgement interest.