A garnishment proceeding against a third party not involved in the original state court proceeding is a separate action which the garnishee can remove to federal court, and after removal, the action is governed by the federal rules of procedure, not state garnishment procedure. A garnishment proceeding against a third party not involved in the original state court proceeding is a separate action that can be removed to federal court by the garnishee. See also Swanson v. Liberty Nat’l Ins. Co. (9th Cir. 1965) 353 F.2d 12. When the garnishment is removed, it commences a new case in federal court which is governed by the federal rules and no longer by state procedural law governing garnishment proceedings because there is no federal judgment to be enforced and so FRCP 69 does not apply. The district court is advised to require the plaintiff to file a new complaint against the garnishee, which the garnishee can answer, thus framing issues for decision in federal court.
Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (Kleinfeld, J.); January 20, 2017; 2017 WL 242558