Wage Garnishment Really Sucks!
Nothing makes your bank account feel more so like it’s on a diet than a wage garnishment. Not only is wage garnishment downright humiliating, the financial bite alone can leave a person or family feeling violated, as if they had just been pickpocketed by an invisible hand.
What is a Wage Garnishment?
Generally speaking, a wage garnishment is a tool used by creditors to secure court permission to “tap” an individual’s bank account or withhold a portion of their paycheck(s) to satisfy an outstanding debt. Typically, wage garnishments happen when times are already pretty tight for a borrower, which essentially brings to mind the old catchphrase, “Robbing Peter to Pay Paul.”
Are There Limits to Wage Garnishment?
Yes. In general, the following limits apply to wage garnishment:
- Employers cannot take more than 25% of an employee’s disposable earnings for garnishment, even if 100+ creditors are fighting over garnished funds.
- Employers cannot take more than the excess of your earnings over 30 times the federal minimum hourly wage (currently, $7.25/hour). Therefore, this means that $217.50 (or 30 x $7.25) is safe from each of your paychecks.
- Some states also allow specific living expenses to be exempt from wage garnishment.
Can Filing Bankruptcy Stop a Wage Garnishment?
Yes, filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy essentially enables the automatic stay to stop creditor’s collection efforts, thereby ceasing wage garnishment activity. If you’re already behind on creditor payments or there’s a pending lawsuit on the horizon, a garnishment is quite possibly the creditor’s next course of action. It might be in your best interest to consider filing bankruptcy to prevent a creditor’s inevitable pickpocket attempt. A garnished paycheck equates to money that you could have used for groceries or bills in your own household.
If you’re worried that creditors could be gearing up to garnish your wages, contact REFUGE Law to keep your disposal income safe and sound. Make an appointment to speak with one of our experienced bankruptcy attorneys. Bankruptcy can help give you relief from your financial worries. Call us today at (404) 618-2733 in Georgia, (713) 570-6377 in Texas, to discuss.CONTACT REFUGE LAW TODAY