How to Stop Wage Garnishment

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How Can I Stop My Wages from Being Garnished?

If you owe money, such as child support or back taxes, a court may order your wages be garnished. This means that your employer deducts money from your paycheck, which is used to pay your debts. Although it may be difficult to get rid of a wage garnishment, you may object to it. The objection depends on the type of debt the creditor is attempting to collect and the law in place.

Pre-Hearing Options

Before going to court and arguing that your wage should not be garnished, you may attempt to negotiate with the creditor for a payment plan. If you are able to work out a payment plan, they can request that the wage garnishment be stopped.

Hearing Option

You can file an objection to the garnishment and claim garnishment exemptions based upon financial hardship. You must then show you are unable to cover your basic living costs if your wage is reduced.

Pursuant to the exemptions, the garnishment will be limited, and thus, a smaller portion will be taken. Generally, exemptions apply for income that you gain from social security, alimony, and retirement (i.e. money you need for your survival necessities).

Filing for Bankruptcy as a Last Resort

If your debts are substantial, you might want to consider filing for bankruptcy. Once you file for bankruptcy, a judge will issue a stay to stop almost all wage garnishments (although child support is usually an exception to this).

If you are successful, at the end of your bankruptcy petition your debt may be completely released. Again, this depends on the type of bankruptcy you file. Some bankruptcies require you to repay your debt.

Do I Need an Attorney?

If you have been subjected to a wage garnishment, you should consult with an employment lawyer as soon as possible. An experienced attorney can review your situation and let you know what your rights, obligations, and options are.

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Last Modified: 07-16-2014 12:28 PM PDT

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