Administration of State Institutions

ORS 179.655
Enforcement of lien

  • distraint warrant


If any amount due the Department of Corrections or the Oregon Health Authority for the cost of care of a person is not paid within 30 days after it becomes due, and no provision is made to secure the payment by bond, deposit or otherwise, pursuant to rules adopted by the appropriate agency, the agency may issue a distraint warrant directed to any county of the state.


After the receipt of the distraint warrant, the clerk of the county shall enter in the County Clerk Lien Record the name of the person, the amount for which the distraint warrant is issued and the date the distraint warrant is recorded. The amount of the distraint warrant shall become a lien upon the title to and interest in any property owned or later acquired by the debtor against whom it is issued, and it may be enforced by the agency in the same manner as a judgment of the circuit court.


In the event that an ability-to-pay order issued under ORS 179.640 (Determination of ability to pay) (4) or (5) becomes final, and supersedes a previous final ability-to-pay order on which a distraint warrant had been issued, the agency shall issue a new distraint warrant superseding the previous distraint warrant, and the lien shall conform to the new order.


The agency may direct a copy of the distraint warrant to the sheriff of any county of the state commanding the sheriff to levy upon and sell the real and personal property of the taxpayer found within that county, for the payment of the amount due, with interest, collection charge and the sheriff’s fee. The sheriff shall return the distraint warrant to the agency and pay to it the money collected not less than 60 days from the date the copy of the distraint warrant was directed to the sheriff.


The agency may issue the directive provided in subsection (4) of this section to any agent of the agency. In executing the distraint warrant, the agent shall have the same powers conferred by law upon sheriffs. However, the agent is not entitled to any fee or compensation in excess of actual expenses incurred in the performance of this duty. [1973 c.806 §§10,11,12; 1983 c.696 §8; 1989 c.348 §5; 1999 c.159 §4; 2001 c.487 §5; 2009 c.595 §151; 2013 c.36 §61]

Attorney General Opinions

Authority of Department of Revenue for access to confidential medical information to apply on behalf of patient under care of Mental Health Division for medical benefits, (1974) Vol 37, p 269; liability for cost of care of person in state institution, (1975) Vol 37, p 357


Last accessed
Mar. 11, 2023