The “Chose in” one
Sale of a Judgment Debtor’s choses in action can come hard and fast
by Andrew R. Korn, Esq.
November 18, 2020
“A cause of action is a property right and can be subject to turnover under the statute.” [i] This applies to both contract and tort claims. [ii]
A recently filed motion explains how easily this can be accomplished in a turnover receivership. [iii]
[i]Charles v. Tamez, 878 S.W.2d 201, 205 (Tex. App.—Corpus Christi 1994, writ denied); See generally Unitrust, Inc. v. Jet Fleet Corp., 673 S.W.2d 619, 621 (Tex. App.—Dallas 1984, no writ) (“[I]t is well established that all or any part of a cause of action may be assigned.”); S. Sur. Co. of New York v. First State Bank of Marquez, 54 S.W.2d 888, 890 (Tex. Civ. App.—Waco 1932, writ ref’d) (“A very liberal policy is recognized in the assignment of both legal and equitable rights.”).
[ii]See In re FH Partners, L.L.C., 335 S.W.3d 752, 761 (Tex. App.—Austin 2011, orig. proceeding) (“the presumption or general rule under Texas law… is that all contracts are freely assignable…it is the longstanding rule in Texas that the right to collect a debt—including not only debts based in contract but also the broader category of rights to recover money known as choses in action—is generally assignable.”); Gray v. Estell, 2001 Tex. App. LEXIS 1887, *6 (Tex. App.—Dallas Mar. 22, 2001, no pet.) (“The general rule in Texas is that causes of action, including personal injury actions, are assignable absent a statutory bar.”); But see PPG Indus., Inc. v. JMB/Hous. Ctrs. Partners Ltd. P’ship, 146 S.W.3d 79, 87-92 (Tex. 2004):
With respect to the assignment of claims, we have recognized the collapse of the common-law rule that generally prohibited such assignments. But the assignability of most claims does not mean all are assignable; exceptions may be required due to equity and public policy… we hold that DTPA claims generally cannot be assigned by an aggrieved consumer to someone else.
[iii]See also Tex. Prop. Code § 12.014(c) (Providing a method of transferring causes of action); Graco Robotics, Inc. v. Oaklawn Bank, 914 S.W.2d 633, 639 (Tex. App.—Texarkana 1995, writ dism’d w.o.j.) (How assignee can maintain claim); Gray v. Estell, 2001 Tex. App. LEXIS 1887, *6 (Tex. App.—Dallas Mar. 22, 2001, no pet.) (Citations omitted) (“The assignee may maintain the suit in the assignor’s name. The assignee may recover either in his own name or in that of the assignor.”); See generally First-Citizens Bank & Tr. Co. v. Greater Austin Area Telecommc’ns Network, 318 S.W.3d 560, 566 (Tex. App.—Austin 2010, no pet.) (“An assignee stands in the shoes of the assignor and may assert those rights that the assignor could assert, including bringing suit.”).