The Georgia Supreme Court recently ruled that any answer of garnishment filed in a court of record in Georgia must be signed by an attorney licensed to practice law in that state. As of September 12, 2011, your nonprofit must use a Georgia-licensed attorney to respond to any summons of garnishment issued by a state or superior court in Georgia. A non-lawyer, such as a clerical employee of a corporation, who answers on behalf of the corporation in a garnishment action before a Georgia court is engaged in the unauthorized practice of law (which may result in criminal sanctions).
If your nonprofit is a client of Pro Bono Partnership of Atlanta and you receive a summons of garnishment, please contact us so that we may assist you. For a copy of the Advisory Opinion on this issue that was upheld by the Supreme Court, click here.