Fraudulent transfers beware! The Florida legislature has revamped the statute governing proceedings supplementary. The changes will go into effect July 1, 2016. The good news for creditors is that all the same avenues to attempt collection are still viable, including debtor examinations and actions for fraudulent transfers. In addition, the changes clarify that the statute of limitations for fraudulent transfers remains 20 years as opposed to 4 as set forth in the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act (“UFTA”). The revisions will streamline an often confusing process both with attorneys and the courts in Florida.
There is also good news for debtors and third parties. Now, instead of blanket motions for proceedings supplementary followed by a fishing expedition for transfers and assets, the creditor must describe property being held by the third party before impleading that party. This will require that the creditor have a legitimate reason before dragging a potential third party recipient of a fraudulent transfer into court. The new rules also require that the third party be served with a notice to appear and directs the third party to file an affidavit explaining why the asset transferred should not be turned over to the creditor. This procedure provides the court with a process and a quick resolution of the issue. If the third party fails to comply presumably the court will enter an order requiring the asset be turned over.
All and all, I applaud the changes as a practitioner that both uses proceedings supplementary to collect on judgments, including foreign judgments, and defends against that same statute. I look forward to implementing these rules into my practice.