Ways & How

how to stop garnishment of wages

how to stop garnishment of wages

After all other collection remedies have been explored and the money owed remains unpaid, your creditor can proceed to wage garnishment. This refers to a legal procedure affected through a court order. When the order is delivered to your employer, the payroll department will incorporate the order into your payroll. The amount ordered to be garnished will be deducted from your wage. Since this kind of "debt collection" remedy can severely affect your personal life, career, and credit score you should find out how to stop garnishment of wages. Remember, the wage levy will keep on appearing on your credit record for a number of years. Once the court order arrives, your employer becomes responsible to deduct the designated amount and deliver the same to the proper recipient. The garnishment can be on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis depending on how often you receive your wage. It can continue until the full amount is completely paid off. Legally, the court can only order for the garnishment of a certain percentage of your disposable net income, after deducting your tax liability.

Disposable income does not include retirement benefits, public assistance benefits, and social security. These forms of income, however, are not absolutely exempted because they can still be garnished if it is intended for spousal or child support. To help you stop wage garnishment, read the tips below.

  1. Be responsible. This means avoid getting sued. No creditor in his or her right mind will file a collection suit against you if you are able to meet your obligations on time. If there are instances that you can't make it, never avoid your creditors. Money matters, debts, finances - all these can be talked about without necessarily going through the court. Be open to your creditors and let them understand your current financial situation. Ask for a grace period; if granted, comply responsibly.

  2. Ask for debt reconstruction. Talking to your creditors can break the barriers. Figure out the amount of your debt and present another scheme of payment by asking for an extension or elimination of penalties. Your effort to ask for a better payment schedule will necessarily signal to your creditors that you are more than willing to cover your debts. Explain to them that it would be more costly on your part if you are sued in court.

  3. Pay the amount. The writ of garnishment issued against you can still be reversed within 10 days. This means that you can still pay the amount so that the garnishment order will no longer take effect, even if it is already in the hands of your employer. Verify the amount, pay it in cash, secure a proof of payment, and submit the proof to the court.

    How will you raise the amount to cover the judgment amount? You may consider borrowing from your family, relatives, and friends. Yes, it may seem awkward, but you can hope to get better re-payment terms from them. These people are likely to understand your predicament.

  4. Claim exemptions. This is possible if you feel that the wage garnishment is too much – to the extent that you can no longer compensate for your basic needs like food, medical expenses, utility bills, etc. When claiming for exemptions, submit to the court documentary proofs showing your present living conditions. These papers must be submitted before that court can decree the writ of wage levy. Your main objective is to reduce the amount to be garnished from your wage.

  5. File for bankruptcy. Based on the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, individual debtors can avail either of Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 personal bankruptcy. These chapters generally cover rights and remedies of individual debtors who are no longer capable of paying their financial obligations to their creditors. After you have filed for bankruptcy, your creditors will be prohibited from collecting from you. This means they cannot institute any legal proceeding against you for purposes of collection, including wage garnishment.

It is important that you know how to stop garnishment of wages, or else it will bring a damaging effect to you credit. While only a portion of your wage can be a subject of garnishment, other garnishments like those by the IRS can take a large portion. Remember, you are protected legally only for one garnishment.


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