Advice on Judgment Garnishment

What will happen when judgment has been filed against you at the courthouse?

What will happen when a judgment has been filed against you at the courthouse for debts that you owe?

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Bill's Answer
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Bills.com Team
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Highlights


  • Review the ways a creditor can collect on a debt after receiving a judgment.
  • Understand that how much a creditor can garnish varies from state to state.
  • Consult with an attorney, to find out how a judgment will affect you.

The answer to your question depends primarily on your state of residence, as each state regulates what actions judgment holders can to enforce judgments they have obtained. I will explain the details in just a moment.

Wage Garnishment

The most common method used by judgment creditors to enforce judgments is wage garnishment, in which a judgment creditor would contact your employer and require your employer to deduct a certain portion of your wages each pay period and send the money to the creditor.

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However, several states, including Texas, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and South Carolina, do not allow wage garnishment for the enforcement of most judgments. In several other states, such as New Hampshire, wage garnishment is not the "preferred" method of judgment enforcement because, while possible, it is a tedious and time consuming process for creditors. In most states, creditors are allowed to garnish wages between 10% and 25% of your income, with the percentage allowed being determined by each state.

For example, if you live in California, which allows for 25% wage garnishment, and you take home $2,000 per month, a judgment creditor could garnish you at the rate of $500 per month until the debt is paid off. Keep in mind that, generally, only one garnishment is allowed at a time, so if you have several judgments against you, the one who contacted your employer first would be paid first from the garnishment, then the second, and so on. Another important point to remember is that Social Security benefits, pension payments, and many other types of income for the elderly and disabled, are exempt from garnishment, which means that most elderly Americans do not need to fear wage garnishment if they are unable to pay their bills.

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The US Dept. of Labor offers several resources explaining wage  garnishment rules in general, and Title III, Consumer Credit Protection Act (CCPA), specifically.

Levy a Bank Account

Another option for a creditor trying to enforce a judgment is to request that your bank to place a levy on your bank account. Basically, this means that the creditor has the right to take whatever money in your account and apply the funds to the balance of the judgment. Again, the procedure for levying bank accounts, as well as what amount, if any, you can claim as exempt from the levy, is governed by state law. Many states exempt certain amounts and certain types of funds from bank levies, so you should carefully review your state's laws to find out if your bank account can be levied.

Lien

The third common way that creditors enforce judgments against consumers is by placing liens on properties owned by judgment debtors. For example, if you own a home, a creditor with a judgment against you will likely place a lien on your home, meaning that if you sell or refinance your home, you will be required to pay the judgment out of the proceeds of the sale or refinance. If the amount of the judgment is more than the amount of equity you have in your home, then the lien may prevent you from selling or refinancing until you can pay off the judgment.

Again, every state has its own rules about property liens, so if you have a judgment against you and own property, you should review your state’s laws to find out what your creditor can and cannot do to enforce its judgment.

To learn more about your state’s laws regarding the enforcement of judgments, I encourage you to visit the Bills.com State Consumer Protection Laws and Exemptions page.

If you have a judgment against you, consult with an attorney licensed in your state to learn how the judgment will affect you, based on your individual financial circumstances.

I hope this information helps you Find. Learn & Save.

Best,

Bill

Bills.com

248 Comments

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  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    Seth
    if you are trying to make a payment arrangement on way behind bills, can credit card companys still try to garnish your wages?
    2 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      A creditor cannot garnish your wages only because you are behind on your bills. In order to garnish your wages, a creditor needs a judgment from a court, which it can't obtain unless it sues you and wins. Keep trying to work out a solution with your creditor before a lawsuit is filed.

      Bankruptcy, while a solution of last resort, stops a garnishment, even one already in place, from the time your bankruptcy petition is filed until it discharges.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    bob
    I paid off the judgment 2 months ago. The Sheriff Dept. is still garnishing my checks and levying my bank account I'm in California. How long does it take to lift the garnisments and levy ??
    1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      The employer should cease the garnishment when the amount specified in the judgment is satisfied. If you settled the debt independently from the garnishment, the employer is unaware of this fact. Consult with a lawyer in your state who has consumer law experience, and ask him or her to file a motion to cease the garnishment.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    steven
    I have 3 judgements for criminal traffic violations from 2008. It stated that 6 to 8 percent interest will be added each year until paid to clerk of courts. Never recieved paper work about payment plan. My question is there a statute of limitation for this??? Can I settle this for less??? They haven't garnished my wages yet so I doubt they will. I already paid over three thousand to get my license back. Should I just drain the rest of my savings to pay it or try to get it reduced. I understand I made a mistake and should pay it, but I have over 400 in interest alone by now. I never recieved a bill, how can they charge me interest? Any advice appreciated.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      I am not aware of any statute of limitations that applies to this kind of government debt.

      I don't believe you will be able to negotiate a settlement for this kind of debt.

      I am hesitant to advise you to drain your savings to pay off the debt. It may make sense to pay off the debt faster than you are, but it is not a good idea to completely drain your savings. Emergencies arise and it is important to have a 'rainy-day fund.' You have to weigh the cost of the interest against the cost of using all your savings.

      Lastly, the reason that you are being charged interest is likely due to the way the law reads in your state, which sets a specific interest rate for a debt like yours.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Tuesday
      Hi there, I judgment has been made against me on a credit card that I had to let go into default to save money for a medical procedure. I was able to speak to an attorney at a local organization that gives free legal assistance when I was served the papers telling me the credit card company was looking to get a judgment against me. (I talked to them to understand what the papers meant) They told me to call them back if I got papers telling me a judgment has been made because I would have 30 days to file something to protect up to $5,000 in my bank account and up to $5,000 of my non-financial assets (my vehicle is worth much less than $5,000 but I definitely need to protect it) I've been playing phone tag with them, but last time it took just about 30 days for me to speak with someone so I figured I'd be safe and look for more advising in case they are unable to come through for me in time. Basically I need to know what papers to file here in NC to keep them from being able to take money (under $5,000) from my bank account and where to find these papers and where to file them. Any help you could give me would be (truly) a lifesaver.
      5 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      In some states, like California, the state courts have forms for almost everything. In most of the other states, however, there are few standardized forms. Follow the advice of the attorney you met and make another appointment with him or her and get help in completing the pleading, form or whatever North Carolina courts call the exemptions you need to file.
      1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Risi
      My husband recently was served with a writ of garnishment to his Former employer! Does this mean he's dodged the bullet for now?? We plan on paying in full but not until oct. Any advice will help! Thanks
      1 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      Yes, he has dodged a bullet, however if the judgment creditor tracks down where he is currently working, he could have his wages garnished there. Any bank account with his name on it is at risk now.

      He could try to play "duck and cover," hoping that nothing bad happens between now and when he can pay in full in October. He could approach the creditor and try to work out a payment plan. Both strategies have risks. Duck and cover only works if the creditor does not locate his new place of employment. Speaking with them to work out a payment plan could lead to a problem if they press him on where he works, in order to garnish him there. It is also only a viable solution if a payment plan can be offered that meets the creditors needs and your budget.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    Andrea
    I received a notice that I have an unpaid medical bill from 1997 from the hospital. I was not aware of a bill nor did I ever pay anything towards it. The notice also stated that there was a small claims court judgment from 1997 stating that I owed the hospital, which I was able to verify. I was also not aware of the judgement. As far as I know, the statute of limitations for judgments in Wisconsin is 20 years. Is there anything I can do besides pay the bill? Also, upon calling, they claim that this will go on my credit score. Since I have never paid the bill, shouldn't the 7.5 years of default be passed so it can't go on the credit report or does paying now mean that it resets the clock? Thanks!
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      Consult with a Wisconsin lawyer who has civil litigation experience. You should not have been surprised by the judgment — one pillar upon which the civil court system stands is that both parties to a lawsuit must receive adequate notice of a lawsuit and all communications regarding a lawsuit. You were surprised by the lawsuit and judgment, which tells me the plaintiff did not give you adequate notice of the lawsuit. The first thing to investigate is whether the results of the trial or hearing can be vacated. Second, in some states, the defendant must be given notice of a judgment. Here again, you were surprised by the notice, which tells me that the plaintiff or the court did not give you adequate notice of the judgment (if either is required to do so under Wisconsin law).

      As mentioned, consult with with a lawyer to learn if the judgment is ripe for attack.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Yvonne
      My husband received a judgement in '05 (it was filed in the state of NY); he never received notification and was unaware of it until a year later when he ran his credit report. By the time he was aware of it, he had already moved to CA (which could be why he never received the lawsuit documentation in the first place) and in '08 received a letter from an attorney mentioning the account had been referred to their "special investigation unit" to locate any assets he has. He is a struggling artist and I am the main provider for our family, and we live paycheck to paycheck. It has always been our intent to pay his judgement once his career took off, however that has yet to happen... now I am unemployed and he has been presented with an opportunity to work on a project, but because of my being unemployed we are in desperate need of every cent of what he can earn from it. My question is twofold: 1) Can they try to garnish his wages OR levy his bank account if it is a NY judgement and he now resides in CA? 2) He plans on forming a CA corporation (not sure yet if LLC or S-Corp) with a bank account tied to it; would they be able to levy this business account? We also have considered forming the corporation as a partnership, would this make any difference in their right to levy the account with me being tied to it OR any other family member for that matter? Thank you so much for your time. I have read a lot of your responses to questions on this site, and I must say, your company is "on it" in terms of providing sound advice and at an amazing response rate and turn around! By far this site is one of the best I've seen for credit/debt management Q&A.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      My first and last thoughts will be to recommend you consult with a California lawyer.
      1. A non-California judgment-creditor has the right to domesticate a sister-state judgment in California. See the link I just mentioned for more information.
      2. You mentioned an interest in forming a corporation. A properly funded and created corporation following all of California's statutes is insulated from its stockholder's liabilities, and vice-versa. This is true for LLCs, S, and traditional corporations. However, if a corporate officer opens a bank or credit union account and uses his or her Social Security number as the tax identification number, that account may be ripe for judgment-garnishment for that officer's personal debts.
      3. The rules for partnership liability are different from corporate liability. A corporation is a legal entity — a person. A partnership is not a distinct legal entity, and as such the business liabilities for one partner are borne by all of the partners equally.

      This is a very abbreviated discussion of corporations and partnerships, and lacks nuance. First, buy one of Nolo Press' excellent guides to forming a business. In particular, Choose the Best Legal Entity for a One-Person Business is a good choice. Second, consult with a lawyer who has experience in forming business organizations.

      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2011
    ronnie
    I am getting letters for attorney's about a law suit file against me in my county (in Texas); I travel a ton for work so I'm just going through months worth of mail. Other than these attorney letters claiming to help I have no other letters, etc. from the county talking about a lawsuit/judgment. How can I tell if these are scare tactics or if something has actually been filed... i want to resolve this as soon as possible but when i call the card company they say it can no longer be handled by them and I am referred to the firm that my debt was handed over to but I have no correspondence from them??? Help.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jun, 2011
      Bill
      It could be scare tactics or it could be a legitimate attempt to collect on a debt. Do you feel you owe someone money and have not paid on the debt for a long enough time that you could have been sued? Was someone contacting you to try and collect on the debt and you ignored it?

      Pull your credit report and view the 'public records' area to see if there is a judgment against you. Look and see who is the creditor and contact them if you owe them money. Consult with an attorney to discuss the statute of limitations. Keep in mind that if you live in Texas, your wages are protected from a garnishment by an unsecured creditor. This gives you more leverage to negotiate a settlement, if you do owe the money.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2011
    gust
    I received a notice of income withholding from my employer, regarding a creditor that I don't know. What should i do?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      Are you aware of any debt that you owe where you were sued by a creditor? To garnish your wages, a creditor has to obtain a judgment against you, after taking you to court. A default judgment can be entered against you, if you were sued and did not appear in court.

      It could be a collection agency that sued you, not the original creditor, which could account for your not recognizing the name.

      I have two suggestions:
      1. Ask your payroll department if it is has contact information for the creditor. Contact the creditor to find out where the debt came from.
      2. Pull your credit report and see if there is a judgment against you. The 'public records' area of your credit report is where judgments are listed. You can get a free credit report at AnnualCreditReport.com
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2011
    kenrick
    need to know if this is legal. Old debt filed for garnishment appanrantly won (sent notice to my job but i never got it). Sent writ of garnishment to my job to start having ym wage garnished and my company did nothing. Sent a few more letters to the point where they have to sue my employer to get the money and won. Now my employer is telling me they can't afford a lein so they want me to sign a papers saying to take sole resisposibilty for the debt and i can't file head of house or bankrupcy protection. The problem is they asked me to sign this about a week ago, they have been garnishing my paycheck now for 6 weeks. So right now my check is being garnished to pay back whatever arrangement they make with this company to avoid a lein. They alreay paid these guys $2800 to pay for all the time that they should have been garnishing my paycheck and they say i have to pay them back since all this is becuase of my debt. Today i asked HR for a copy of the writ of garnishment from the creditor that gives them to right to garnish my check they said they have no paperwork on it. Can they do that? Can they garnish my pay to pay back a settlement they come without a court order? Even if i file bankrupsy, will they still take the money out of my paycheck for whatever settlement they come to with these guys? If i could afford an atterny I would but i can't why all i can do is ask where can i go?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      The situation you described — an employer ignoring a wage garnishment order, getting sued, and making the employee pay the legal fees — is fact dependent and unusual. It is also something of a minefield because of the imbalance of power in the employer-employee relationship. If what you described is accurate, your employer's payroll department made a tremendous mistake when it a) ignored the wage garnishment, and b) socked you with the bill for its error. I am flabbergasted that your HR department does not have any records of the garnishment, which is either a sign of ineptitude or an attempt to hide the department's mistakes.

      You mentioned you cannot afford a lawyer. Call your county bar association, and ask for the name of the organization in your area that provides no-cost legal services to people with no or low income. Make an appointment with that organization, and bring all of the documents you have regarding the mess you described. The lawyer you meet will advise you accordingly.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2011
    Rita
    Hi Bill- I am a California resident. Can a creditor levy or garnish wages to the child (adult) or sibling (adult) of a debtor?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      Bill
      While I cannot give you legal advice, it is my clear understanding that only a person responsible for a debt can have his or her wages garnished. Therefore, a sibling or child is not under threat of having wages garnished.

      However, anyone who is subject to garnishment can also suffer a bank levy. If a third-party shares an account with a judgment-debtor, the third-party's funds in the account could be seized, too.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2011
    Tonya
    If a debtor in Indiana has some pending small claims cases that may result in a reward to the debtor can thier award be ordered to pay a judgement against that debtor? For example, MRS Y sue me and let the Judge know that I have a pending case against MR X and if prevail can the Judge over Mrs Y case order the award from MR X's be used to pay MRS Y?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      I am not a judge, but what I know about judges would lead me to guess that the answer to your hypothetical question is, "No." Judges like to keep cases compartmentalized, unless the parties in several cases are the same. In the case you described, assuming you are "Z", Z and X could resolve their case out of court, which may leave Y hanging if the judge told Y, "Let's wait and see what happens in the case of X vs. Z." Or, what it Z appeals the case? Should Y have to wait for years before all appeals are exhausted? That strikes me as an injustice.

      Now, all of that said, I am certain a Bills.com reader will chime in and say, "Hey, that X, Y, Z thing happened to me," so I am not not saying what you suggested would never happen, but I think it is unlikely.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      tonya
      OK if u freeze asset in a bank account can that be done when case is filed?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      An asset freeze can result from two court orders:
      1. A judgment. A judgment follows a trial where the defendant is found to have harmed the plaintiff, or whatever the cause of action might be.
      2. A temporary restraining order (TRO). A TRO would be a response to the plaintiff's motion that there is a risk the defendant may shift his or her assets outside of the country, liquidate them, or take some other action that would make it impossible for the plaintiff to collect the funds in question. A government will often ask for such a restraining order in criminal cases.

      TROs are usually not applied in routine credit card debt, student loans, or deficiency balance cases.

      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2011
    marc
    Recently found out my wages are being garnished, unknown to me there was an open case made against me by CACV of colorodo on an old credit card debt, the original case against me was opened in 2005 and was open until 2007,then reopened in feb. 2011 by a local attorney which resulted in a judgement made against me and my wages now being garnished- I had no idea this was in existance and looked into the case on the web on 2/23/2005 the case was filed,summons were issued to me and returned up to 5/30/2006, on 7/25/2006 it shows final judgement by default was made, on 8/31/2006 the case was reopened and on 5/25/2007 a final writ of garnishment was issued and returned....
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      If you were surprised by this judgment, then the plaintiff's lawyer did not give you adequate notice of the pending lawsuit. This is a violation of your state's civil procedure law. Consult with a lawyer in your state who has civil litigation experience. He or she will review the facts in your case, and file a motion to vacate the judgment if the facts support such a motion.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      marc
      Thnaks for the input - I live in florida and have been looking into my options on what to do, I really cant afford to lose 25% out of every paycheck and still afford to pay all of my monthly living expenses and current bills (car payment,car insurance-etc..)seeing as I live basically paycheck to paycheck - will there be a fee to consult with a local attorntey on the matter ? I was also wondering if seeing how the debt is from the 2005-2006 time frame (I have tried to gather info on where the debt originated from, pulled up my credit report but could not find the debt or any other old debt that is remotely close to the amount from the judgement ?) does it fall into the florida state statute of limitations - 4 to 5 years time frame a creditor has to collect money owed from the last payment made or time the debt was reported past due... ? I dont really understand according to the "case summary" I printed out of the county website if the case remained open all this time or if it was closed then re-opened in jan. 2011 ? and would that affect the statute of limitations time frame ? Once again thank you for any help or info...mp
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      The cliche "Let sleeping dogs lie," comes to mind when I read your questions about the debts that no longer appear on your credit report. Regarding the judgment, it is possible to renew judgments in most states. I have no statistics on how frequently judgments are renewed.

      Regarding finding legal advice, consult with a Florida attorney, or Florida Legal Services, or call your county bar association to learn which organization provides no-cost legal services to people in your area. Make an appointment with that organization, and bring all of the documents relating to your debts to your meeting. The attorney you meet will review your documents and advise you accordingly.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2011
    James
    I am currently having 25% of my check withheld in Florida due to a court order to pay off one creditor. I am also paying $150 per month to another creditor that we settled on before if went to court. In all I am paying over $750 a month on these bills and I now can not afford my mortgage as well. But my main question is that I just won $1000 on a lottery ticket that was given to me as a gift and I wanted to know if anyone can withhold the money that is owed me as I really need this money to pay my bills, so I have not cashed the ticket in yet. Thanks.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      According to the Florida lottery How to Claim page, "Social Security numbers (are) used to determine whether a claimant owes an outstanding debt to a state agency or child support collected through a court, pursuant to Section 24.115, Florida Statutes." I find no indication that judgment-creditors can intercept a Florida lottery prize.

      Regarding the garnishment you cannot afford, consult with a Florida attorney, or Florida Legal Services, or call your county bar association to learn which organization provides no-cost legal services to people in your area. Make an appointment with that organization, and bring all of the documents relating to your debts to your meeting. The attorney you meet will review your documents and advise you accordingly.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2011
    Anthony
    Hello Bill, I have just been served and have 19 days to respond. I sent a DV letter and they replied with a copy of a statement and none else. It shows my name, address and creditors name but it did not supply the other request which was to prove the lawyer owned the debt, the calculation on amount owed, how it got there, etc. I am disputing the amount as it does not nearly add up to what I know it shall be then. My question is, am I stuck with this validation by them? Or can I send another dispute to give more information as previously requested. Is it a lost cause? What would happen if I show up in court and deny the debt owed. Will it help? Also, what are chances of a judgement handed to me by a judge if I lose.. can they take beds, stoves, refridgerators etc? I live in Illinois. Thanks in advance Bill Anthony
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      I have several reading assignments for you:
      1. Read the Bills.com resource Illinois Collection Laws to learn more about your rights and liabilities as an Illinois resident
      2. See the Bills.com resource Debt Validation to learn more about the central issue in your question. In particular, see the February 16, 2011 exchange with Danielle, who asks a pointed question about the level of proof necessary for a debt to b considered valid

      It is impossible for me to predict the behavior of the creditor. I encourage you to exercise your rights and appear in court. The creditor may ask the court to dismiss your case if you appear. Consult with an Illinois attorney who has experience in civil procedure to learn how to prepare for a hearing.

      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2011
    Aytekin
    Hi. I have received 3 default judgments against me and want to apply to court to vacate the judgments. I have been having health problems since 2008. I was on dialysis between 2008-2010 and had a kidney transplant in 2010 and could not work after my transplant. I was getting some summons during this period of time. Since the credit card interest rates became very high I saw that I would not be able to be debt free and contacted a debt settlement company called "LifeGuard Financial" in 2009. I enrolled to a two-year program. I paid for 23 of 24 payments until now but stop making payments after getting a judgment. I was simply thinking that they were negotiating with my creditors. When I called the debt settlement company several weeks ago at the contact number given in my contract, the gentlemen on the phone told me "Lifeguard does not exist anymore". I actually want to negotiate with the creditors but also think that it is not fair to have these judgments against me. Therefore, I want to go to court. Do you think this is a good strategy or should I just try to negotiate with them without going to the court? And what reason should I use to vacate the judgment. Please also note that I live in NY and was unemployed since 2009. Another related question: Since I have not been working I really don't have much money in our bank account which is joint with my wife. We don't own a house or mortgage. We have a old (94) car. She is working part-time. Can they take her wages even if the court decisions are against me? I really appreciate your help. Thanks a lot.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      Consult with a New York attorney who has civil litigation experience regarding the money you paid LifeGuard Financial. You may be the victim of a scam. When you go to you meeting with the attorney, bring all of the documents you have regarding the debt. He or she will advise you if you have a cause of action against LifeGuard Financial, and how to negotiate a settlement with the judgment-creditors.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2011
    Kendrick
    Lost a judgement in court recently on a 16yr old repo. not getting in that aspect of it, the collection agency contact me about making arangment to start making payment, i said no (i am filing the head of houshold exemption). he said fine we will start garnishing your wages. A week later he call me employer treating them with a lein against the company unless they pay the jugment in full. Can they legally do that? HR tell me they got nothing from the clerks about a garnishment. Now my boss is just piss off at the whole thing and looking like they are ready to fire me over the whole thing. What to do, can they do this? Put a lien on my emlpoyer i mean.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Bill
      I have three responses to your message:
      1. The judgment-creditor has no cause of action against your employer, nor any legal basis upon which to file a lien against your employer's property. The judgment-creditor's statement that it can file a lien against your employer is a lie.
      2. Consult with a lawyer who has consumer law experience regarding the judgment-creditor's outrageous, unreasonable, and illegal claims he or she is making to your employer. A consumer law attorney may take your case on a contingency basis, which means no out-of-pocket costs to you.
      3. Under federal law, your employer may not fire you for one wage garnishment. If your employer uses the wage garnishment as the basis for terminating your employment, you have a cause of action against your employer.

      I am curious how a creditor got a judgment against you for a 16-year-old deficiency balance. In all jurisdictions I am aware of, the statute of limitations would have expired long ago. Had you responded to the lawsuit with a statute of limitations defense, the court would have dismissed the case.

      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Kendrick
      Easy to do, falsify court records. They file they lawsuit in 2001, got jugdement in 2002 and have sat on it for 9 years. In florida they can do that so my best curse it seems at this point is the head of household examption. They even told my employer they sent a letter but i must have when through the mail and got rid of it.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2011
    Ella
    I appeared at the summons and answered 'deny' because of the amount owed a collector of an old credit card debt that changed hands three times. A status hearing is set for 3/31/11. I'm at a low point financially with retirement from my late husband's funds, receive student loan refunds quarterly, have no house/property, a 13-yr old SUV in good shape but need of repairs. My only source of other income is from demonstrator work which I do independently for four companies. Demo numbers and payments sometimes vary but usually get paid within 30 days later, about $650-850/mo. Some months, I do demos within two weeks and some spread out over the month. One company pays me $60 for one demo a month, the highest is $360/mo. How do I figure the amount they are able to garnish if they get a judgment? I am waiting for an appointment with legal aid but not clear on what happens next. I'm paying small payments to other credit card companies but this collector kept pushing for more till I could not afford the monthly payments. My bills have fallen behind but I've been catching up slowly and barely surviving in a studio apt. on my own. They are not likely to go thru my belongings to auction off (legal aid info) but what else could they do? My work as demonstrator is really going well and there may be more offers soon but not by very much. How might this affect future work since I am an independent contractor? Can they garnish the companies I represent but am not an employee? I appreciate any info you may provide. I live in Hawaii. Mahalo.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      Garnishment laws vary from state to state. In some states it is certainly the case that 1099 recipients can have the monies they would receive from the firm that contracted with them garnished. Garnishments can be more severe for 1099 recipients, because the monies are not given the same protections as wages; the monies paid can be viewed as receivables in some jurisdictions, resulting in 100% of the receivables being taken. Bank accounts can also be levied. It may be difficult, however, for the creditor to know or find the companies that contract for your services.

      Consult with a local bankruptcy attorney. Find out if you qualify for bankruptcy, whether it will offer you protections for your bank account and money you earn as a contractor, as well as what can happen in Hawaii if you are not under the supervision and protection of the bankruptcy court. Please report back and let us know how things develop for you.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Elaine
      Hello Bill, I have a question about wage garnishment. I had an old credit card that is about ten years old. That is now garnishing my wages, my gross was $637 but because of the added garnishments to my deductions. I only brought home $295..my rent is $800 a month. Can a wage garnishment be stopped? Is there a hardship form? Any further advice will be very helpful thank you.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      You indicated you reside in California. See the Bills.com resource California Wage Garnishment to learn more about your rights and liabilities under California law. The best time to fight the amount of a wage garnishment is before the garnishment commences. However, you may be able to file a motion to change the amount if it causing a hardship or greater than the statutory amount. Consult with the reference I just mentioned and a California lawyer who has experience in remedies law to learn more.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Apr, 2011
      Ella
      Aloha Bill, Thank you for your help. Here is an update. Legal aid has been very busy so unable to set up an appointment with a lawyer but I've spoken with others there for some information. (I was confused after speaking to two different workers with slightly different information and suggestions. Everyone should do research and get as much info as possible from other sources, too.) I've requested more time to the plaintiff's lawyers and statement of accounting for the amounts they say I owe. I did not receive anything from them so went to the status hearing-court very nervous. I had my letters and certified postal receipts to show my requests if necessary but the lawyers asked for more time anyway. The judge set a continuance for 2 months as in cases just before mine. It should give me enough time for legal counsel and for them to come up with statements/docs etc. as the judge pointed out in his decision to grant continuance. As for the garnishment, in Hawaii they may be able to garnish 25% of the total income which is figured with my social security plus my other income. That means, even though they cannot take anything from the retirement monies (and since I have it in a separate bank account), they could take as much as $450 per month (from my other income) until the judgment is paid. That would leave me only about $300 (or less on the lean months) for living expenses of food, gasoline, utilities, and bills. In that case, I may have to file for bankruptcy. My only other option is if they change their minds and accept a settlement or work something else out since once bankruptcy is filed, they will end up with nothing. It's worth a chance at least to try for some kind of settlement. I did not want to file for bankruptcy so it will be my absolute last choice since in cases of credit card debt in Hawaii, it is usually in favor of the creditor. So, even if I dispute that the amount should be less, with the attorney's fees etc. the final amount will only add up more if we end up in a trial to dispute the amount. I'm thinking, rather than argue the amount, better to resolve before costs add up. As it is, bankruptcy may be the only thing I might do since I don't have money to settle even for half. Thank you for your help and suggestions.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2011
    Kris
    I am being sued in the State of Colorado for a bad credit card debt. Can they really garnish 75% of my check each time I get paid? That doesn't leave me with any money to pay other bills or even survive.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      Colorado 5-5-106 sets limits on wage garnishments at, essentially, the federal limit, which is 25% of the individual's disposable earnings for that week; or the amount by which the individual's disposable earnings for that week exceed 30 times the federal minimum hourly wage.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Kris
      Thanks for the reply. It says 25% a week of disposable income. But I get paid bi-weekly so does that mean they will be taking 50% out of my check everytime I get paid?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Mar, 2011
      Bill
      No, that is not what the statutes mean at all. Keep in mind that wage garnishment statutes were written 100 years ago when it was common for wages to be paid weekly. These statutes were also written for workers whose income varies from week to week. If, for example, a worker gets paid an identical amount every two weeks, the courts would divide the paycheck in half and then determine the percentage that could be garnished.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2011
    keisha
    If you had a judgment already against you with one law office and you were making payments but they were not being applied to your balance and the company folded behind this can the same judgement be given to a new law office or would they have to file for their own?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      If I understand your facts and question correctly, Collection Agent A sued you, won, and got a judgment against you. You negotiated a payment plan with Collection Agent A, and started your payments. My guess is Collection Agent A did not report your payments to the consumer credit reporting agencies, which is what you meant when you wrote that the payments were not applied to your balance. Collection Agent A ceases to exist. You are asking if Collection Agent B can buy the collection account or judgment. In theory, yes, a collection account and a judgment is an asset that can be bought, sold, traded, or gifted. When Collection Agent A wound-down its operations, it may have sold your collection account to another collection agent. It has the right to collect whatever amount remains on the judgment. If your judgment was for $100 and you paid it $70, then Collection Agent B has the right to collect $30 from you. This is a somewhat unusual situation, and before you pay Collection Agent B a dime, consult with a lawyer in your state to understand your rights.

      Once a judgment is rendered, a creditor or a successor in interest cannot re-litigate the same issue.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      keisha
      If you have a wage garnishment in the process of being started can you still make payments to the collectors to lower the debt or maybe even pay the debt off sooner?? Meaning if they start taking 15% or however much am I allowed to make additional payments after the fact or before it even starts..
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      I believe every single creditor will accept payments you send them, at any time. While some loans come with a pre-payment penalty, there is no such penalty for paying off your judgment. Once you pay off the entire debt, if you do so outside of the garnishment, make sure to get something in writing to give to your payroll department, so you can prove that the garnishment should be stopped.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      KEISHA
      I called the creditor who has my judgment now for the credit card and they informed me that they wanted the balance in full now in order to stop the garnishment from taking place so I informed them that I could not pay the entire balance but could make payment and they declined stating that it has already been sent to the sherriff office but I just received a receipt yesterday from the District Courts stating that they just sign up to be the counsel for the Planiff which is the credit card company so would this mean that I have sometime before the garnishment actually happens?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      Your case is unusual with complicated facts. Consult with a lawyer in your state who has experience in consumer law or civil litigation. If you cannot afford a lawyer, call your county bar association. Ask for the name of the organization in your area that provides free legal services to people with low or no income. Make an appointment with that organization and bring all of your documents relating to the debt and judgment to your meeting. A lawyer will give you precise advice and explain your options. I realize this is not the answer you wanted. However, as I mentioned, the issues in your case make it such that a few words in an e-mail message or Web posting are not enough to resolve your problems.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2011
    Bobbie
    Hi... I'm being garnished from a automobile company that I was the co-signer on... the oringial person filed bankruptcy, so I'm the one they are garnishing... But the debt no longer appears on my credit report due to the SOL... can they still garnish me if the the SOL has passed??
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      To get to a judgment, the creditor first needs to file a lawsuit against the debtor, win, and then with the judgment in hand, ask the court to garnish the debtor's wages. The first thing to do is to make sure the judgment-creditor took all of these steps. Did you receive a summons to appear? If so, did you attend the court hearing? If so, what happened?

      There is no relationship between a state's statute of limitations and the federal law that governs how long a debt can appear on a credit report. If your state has a long statute of limitations, say 10 years, then a creditor may sue you in your state's court long after the debt falls off a credit report.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2011
    Nancy
    In 2000 I was a struggling single mother and tried to settle a past due credit card balance with Capital One. After trying to work something out with them multiple times and with no response from them, I gave up. In 2001, I went to the courthouse after they filed a court action and I sat with a rep for the creditor in a room with a bunch of other debtors (I assumed) and I told him I was unable to pay the debt. I never went in front of a judge. In 2002, I lost both my job and my home After losing my job and my home in 2002, I did not hear from anyone about this debt again - likely because I had no permanent address for several years. My credit reports reflected the bad debt and then charge-off until 2007-2008 of the roughly $2000 credit card balance. Now it's 2011 and I received a notification from Portfolio Recovery - a collection company? - trying to collect more than $7,000 on behalf of a debt from Capital One. They sent it to a name I have not had legally since 1999 after my divorce. I recognize that someone can still try to collect this from me but my question is: Is it possible for me to have missed a court hearing because notices could not be sent to me because I had no permanent address and if so, is a judgement attained then binding? Also, are they able to garnish/levy my income and/or bank accounts without my knowledge now? Wouldn't they have to take me to court again to do this? Wouldn't they also have to use the legal name I have had and used since 1999? Can I reply to this company that I received the notice from and dispute the claim? What should I do?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      Nancy, your question raise a lot of different issues that you need to consider.

      One issue for you to examine is the statue of limitations for your debt. Your legal responsibility to pay on the debt may have ended. Review the chart in the link above, to see the statute for your state. The statute started running 30 days after you made your last payment or made a commitment to repay the debt.

      It is not clear to me, from what you wrote, whether the creditor may already have a judgment. If the creditor obtained a judgment before the statute of limitations expired, then the judgment remains in force for a specific number of years based on the state. In most states a judgment can be renewed, as long as it is renewed before it expired.

      If a judgment was obtained against you years ago, then you are subject to collection efforts such as a wage garnishment, a bank levy, and having a lien filed against you. The creditor would not need to get a new court order to garnish.

      I believe the issue regarding your name is really a non-issue. You are the person that incurred the debt, regardless of the name being used in attempts to collect on the debt. Any judgment obtained that specified your former name would remain enforceable now, when you are using a new name.

      I suggest that you immediately request that the debt be validated. In the debt validation process, you need to contact the debt collector in writing within 30-days of the collector contacting you. Let the collector know that you dispute the debt and that you request the name and address of the original creditor, and that the debt collector shall cease collection of the debt, or any disputed portion thereof, until the debt collector obtains verification of the debt or any copy of a judgment, or the name and address of the original creditor, and a copy of such verification or judgment, or name and address of the original creditor, is mailed to the consumer by the debt collector.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Nancy
      Hi again Bill, Thank you so much for your detailed response. One last question - after writing to you yesterday, I read some of the other posts. I live in MA and saw the 20 year ability to collect on a judgement. You responded to someone else that the judgement should show up in their credit reports under a specific category and I pulled all 3 of my credit reports yesterday and no judgements show up at all. The only one court-filing I had (so I know that an item can be successfully recorded something there in my credit reports) was an IRS Lein that I have since paid. So does this sound like there was no judgement issued? I plan to do exactly what you suggest and validate the debt and judgement. If there was no judgement, the statute of limitations ran out in 2007 or so after six years. Thanks again Bill.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      Whether a judgment appears on a credit report does not mean a judgment does or does not exist. Credit reports are not exhaustive. There is no requirement that a creditor report a debt or judgment to the consumer credit reporting agencies. For example, hundreds of events happen in our towns each day that never appear on the evening news, but that does not mean the events never happened. It is the same with credit reports. You may borrow $20 from a sibling, and that will not appear on your credit report, but the fact that your credit report does not show the debt does not mean you do not owe the $20.

      Judgments are court documents and as such are public records. Consult with a lawyer in your state to conduct research to learn if a judgment was filed. Depending on your state court system's level of technical sophistication, such research may take a few minutes, or considerably longer. Get an estimate before giving the attorney a go-ahead.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Nancy
      Thanks again for your quick and detailed response. I'm a little confused and thought maybe I read the other response incorrectly - 3 posts above my first you respond to Leah M. in Honolulu, and say "The best way to see if there is a judgement is to check the 'public records' area of your credit reports. Check all three credit bureaus, to see if any of them show a judgement." That sounded pretty definitive to me and now you're saying that it doesn't have to be in my credit reports to exist? Could I go to the court and see if there are any outstanding judgements against me? Is that a way to do it without involving an attorney? There has to be a simpler way to find out if a judgement was ordered against me, wouldn't you think? Anything I receive from this Portfolio Recovery company as 'validation' of this debt will be suspect to me anyway and I will want to independently verify it if there is documentation of a judgement in there. I'm assuming that verification would be at the court it was ordered by anyway, right? Sorry to bombard you...I greatly appreciate your expertise.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      I apologize for the unclear word choice in the January 20 reply you mentioned. When I wrote best I should have written "the fastest and cheapest but non-definitive way to see if there is a judgment is to check the 'public records' area of your credit reports." You reside in Massachusetts. I am unable to find a no-cost way to access court records in Massachusetts. Consult with an attorney about doing this search. As I mentioned, the cost may be tiny if, for example, Massachusetts judgments are listed in Lexis/Nexis or Westlaw, and the attorney you speak to has a Lexis/Nexis or Westlaw account.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Daniel
      There is no requirement that judgments be reported to the credit bureaus - in fact, reporting to the bureaus, while encouraged, is pretty much voluntary (although everyone understands that the system only works if everyone complies). Similarly, while the bureaus will report judgments that are reported to them, they don't scour the public records for reportable events - from their perspective, the workload would be ridiculous, particularly since the entry would be manual rather than a formatted download. Also, credit agreement(s) don't contain confession of judgment clauses so unless you've been served, it's unlikely if not impossible for you to have a judgment.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2011
    christine
    My sister was rented an apartment under my fathers name with his consent and the apartments knew he would not be living there. She failed to fulfill the lease and he was taken to court with a judgment being filed against him. They started wage garnishments on said judgment from his employer. Just when the judgment was satisfied he was served with more judgment papers. They are trying to bring a second judgment against him for the same apartments back rent which was on the first judgment. They are also charging him almost $1200.00 for a debt collection fee. We live in Arizona. Is there any advice you can give for my Dad as I do not think they should be able to do this. Also can they charge for a debt collection fee? Are they not supposed to be paid a percentage of the judgment by the apartment complex. Thank you for any helpful advice you can provide.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Feb, 2011
      Bill
      Your father should speak with an attorney experienced in civil litigation ASAP. He should not have to pay on a debt that has already been paid. Collection agencies can add fees, as long as they are consistent with the terms of the original contract or the laws of the state. No fees can be added once the debt is paid. Your dad should not give even a single penny to the debt collector or make any statement acknowledging any responsibility on his part to pay them, unless he is advised to do so by an attorney. Have your dad bring all the paperwork he has, especially any proof that he paid the debt already, when he meets with the lawyer.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2011
    Tammy
    Im from Muskegon Michigan, I won $5,000.00 on Michigan Lottery. It was taken due to a garnishment from a finance company for a vehicle. This garnishment expired on 10/31/2010. Another was not filed, How often are garnishments filed? An attorney I spoke to said every three months. This finance company's attorney says every year. Whats the real answer!
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      My reading of Michigan Law is that a Writ of Garnishment is valid only for 91 days after it was issued. I believe that the creditor could keep filing new Writs of Garnishment until the debt is paid off. I see nothing in the law that requires a creditor to wait a year (or any length of time), before filing another Writ. It could be the case that the finance company you spoke with chooses to file Writs of Garnishment only once a year, but that is a choice not a legal requirement.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2011
    Leah
    How do you know if you have a judgment against you? All creditors call and say "there is an important court matter" but I have never received any paperwork in the mail or been served with papers. thank you!
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      Do you believe that you have old, unpaid debts that you were sued over? A judgment can't be entered against you, without a court ordering it. A judgment would be preceded by a lawsuit, a lawsuit preceded by threatening letters and phone calls. It is possible to have not received any information about a judgment, if you have moved, for example. In that case, you would not have received any of the notices mailed to you, a lawsuit could have taken place, and a default judgment entered against you because you did not appear to dispute the creditor's claims that you owe the debt. If this were to happen, the best way to see if there is a judgment is to check the "public records' area of your credit reports. Check all three credit bureaus, to see if any of them show a judgment. Until you KNOW that you owe money, don't pay a penny to anyone. It very well could be a scam.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2011
    Jans
    I just got notice of a judgment against me for 10K. My bank account was frozen today for $1500 which was the entire amount available. I know who the creditors are and that amount has been in dispute. HOwever, the court documents show that papers were served to another person with my same name in another county in New Jersey. Somehow, the court deemed this to be enough and froze my account to satisfy the judgment. Can i get this vacated asap? I have no money available to me as it is now frozen and I never received the papers to even contest. What is my recourse?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      I find it amazing that some lawyers can never get the address right when sending defendants notices of pending litigation, but can find the right addresses and parties when placing liens on property, levies on accounts, and contacting the right employers for wage garnishments. Consult with an attorney immediately and have the judgment vacated. The plaintiff gave the court incorrect information, which in its haste gave notice to the wrong party. If you cannot afford an attorney, call your county bar association and ask for the name of the organization that provides legal services to low- and no-income people in your area. Make an appointment with that organization, and bring all of your documents relating to the debt and judgment to that meeting. An attorney will advise you accordingly.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Laura
      Hi, I received a judgment in Utah against a former renter who didn't pay rent. Now I find out his payroll department is in Dallas, Tx. He doesn't live or work in Texas, he lives in Utah and works in New Mexico. Can I attach his wages?
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      Generally speaking, the location of the payroll office or the location of the judgment-debtor's job site is irrelevant for the purposes of wage garnishment. Consult with a Utah attorney to learn the proper procedure for garnishing the wages of a Utah resident. See the Bills.com resource Utah Collection Laws to learn more about Utah's wage garnishment rules.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Laura
      The reason I ask is I have heard that you can't garnish wages in Texas for other than Child Support and Taxes. I wanted to know if this still held true if the person didn't live/work/own property in Texas.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      Each state has its own laws that govern whether wage garnishments are allowed and how much of a wage can be garnished if they are. Here is a list of collection laws broken down state by state. You are subject to the laws of the state in which you reside, not the state where the creditor is located. In Texas, unsecured creditors will not be able to enforce a judgment against a debtor with a wage garnishment. However, it is not just taxes or delinquent child support that can lead to a wage garnishment in Texas. A person could have his or her wages levied in Texas for delinquent student loan debt, for over-payment on unemployment, and for other debts owed to a government entity.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2010
    jim
    I have a question. I had a judgement against me for 7560.00. I set up a deduction from my paycheck to pay it off, making a garnishment unnecessary. eventually I recieved a letter from the employer stating that the amount was paid in full, which it was. I later found out that the creditor appearently had an outstanding balance they said I still owe of 1,300.00 which they claim are interest and court cost payments and are threatening to go straight to a garnishment. The court judgement order shows the court costs figured into the total judgement. Can they do this?. the letter I recieved stated that my employer did not figure in these things. In my opinion, they are trying to get more money out of me.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      If the facts you shared are accurate, then I agree with your conclusion -- the law firm is double-dipping. Consult with an lawyer in your state who has experience in civil litigation. Ask him or her to draft a letter to the collection agent and its law firm explaining the judgment in clear language. If it continues to insist on collecting the $1,300, ask for a hearing. If you cannot afford an attorney, call your county bar association and ask for the name of the organization in your area that provides civil legal services to people with low- or no-income in your area. Make an appointment with that organization and bring all of your documents relating to the debt and garnishment to the meeting. The lawyer or paralegal you meet with will advise you accordingly.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Anthony
      I have a question. I have a judgment against me and I live in California. I pay 1300 in child support and 188.00 in taxes. All of those combined is far more than 40% of my monthly income. Are they going to be able to garnish my wages? I am barely getting by which is why I haven't been able to pay my credit cards, due to the economy I took a 30,000 a year pay cut... So I had to choose the important bills to pay...
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Bill
      You mentioned you are a California resident. See the Bills.com resource California Wage Garnishment to learn more about the laws relevant to Californians. If you receive notice of a pending garnishment, California and other states have a procedure debtors may follow to prevent or reduce the amount of a garnishment if the garnishment will cause a hardship.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Mona
      Greetings from OK! And thank you for your help and advice. Here is my situation; sued by creditor and have a summary judgment against me. I also have two liens (one from CA and one from the IRS filed in my home county.) Due to a very large IRS debt (40K) was on an Installment Agreement, but finally had to file a 433F form due to spouse losing his job; have been declared "non-collectible." Question: If I was going to pay anyone wouldn't I have to pay the IRS first and foremost? Their review of my finances show me left in the red actually and so I can't even pay an attorney to assist with this. Can this argument be used in my next hearing (after I protest the wage garnishment this creditor is sure to hit me with?) Thank you.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      The rules for IRS collections are different than for other debts. While it makes sense to think the IRS must be paid first, that is not necessarily the case. The IRS collection rules allow anyone with a tax debt to temporarily NOT make any payment on the debt, if he or she can demonstrate a financial hardship that meets the IRS standards, based on an analysis of household income, assets in the taxpayer's name, and allowable living expenses. That is what you did, when you filled out the Form 433. You were able to show the IRS that, by the IRS' own rules, that you can't afford to make a monthly payment. Not collectible status protects you from an IRS wage or bank levy. All collection efforts stop, generally for one year. You forfeit any tax refund you would receive, as it will be applied to your tax debt balance.

      The rules are entirely different for other creditors. They do not offer anything akin to Not Collectible status. When other creditors have a judgment against you, you are at extreme risk for having your wages or bank accounts levied. How much of your paycheck can be garnished depends on the state in which you live. Some states, such as Texas, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and North Carolina do not allow wage garnishment at all except for debts related to taxes, child support, federally guaranteed student loans, and court-ordered fines or restitution. Other states cap how much of your wages can be garnished, with the cap varying from state to state.

      If you make an argument of financial hardship to your judgment creditors, stating that the IRS felt you couldn't afford a monthly payment, they don't need to treat you like the IRS did. I think they will proceed full steam ahead with wage and bank levies.

      I have a couple of suggestions for you. One is to speak with a bankruptcy attorney. Filing bankruptcy prevents your wages from being levied. If filing for bankruptcy would discharge your debts, it may be an excellent decision. It may be a prudent decision, even if you can't discharge your debts, if it protects you from a wage levy and allows you to make a payment to your creditors that you can afford. If you are eligible for a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, make sure to speak with your attorney about whether or not your tax debts can be included in the bankruptcy. Income taxes owed to the IRS can be included in a Chapter 7 bankruptcy if the taxes were due for three years, filed for two years, and the assessment has been in place for at least 240 days.

      My other suggestion is for you to speak with a tax professional about the IRS' Offer in Compromise program. The fact that you were approved for Not Collectible indicates that you lack the income to repay the debt. If you also lack significant assets in home equity, vehicle equity, retirement accounts, or investment accounts, you likely have a strong case for a tax settlement.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Mona
      Thank you for your help; I am going to go to the local law library and see if there are any cases similar and will also take all my IRS, FTB and OK Tax Commission paperwork with me to the hearing. I may even bring a letter from the IRS once I explain the situation to them about what is happening; I'm sure they will affirm their right under *federal* rules that they are owed first in any case. Will let you know, and I hope for the best!
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Jan, 2011
      Bill
      Mona, please keep us posted on how things develop.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2010
    zeda
    Hello, I have a judgement against me from a credit card company for a few thousand dollars. They put a lien on my bank account & took around $450. However my "payment" has not been reflected on my judgement at the courthouse & I still owe the original amount. It has been a few months so I'm wondering why money they take from me is not reflected on my judgement amount.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      You need an advocate. Consult with an attorney regarding this matter. If you cannot afford one, call your county bar association and ask for the name of the local organization that provides legal assistance for people in your area with low or no income. Make an appointment with that organization, and bring all of your documents relating to the debt and judgment to your meeting. A lawyer or paralegal will advise you accordingly.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2010
    Toni: The issues you face are beyond the capabilities that I can provide via e-mail or a Web site posting. Consult with an attorney in your state who has experience in bankruptcy. Bankruptcy might not be the right option for you, but you need to consult with a lawyer who can suss-out the facts from you regarding the sources of your debt(s), the amounts, and any state or federal programs to benefit people impacted by natural disasters that may help you. Also, you may need legal advice to resolve the issue with your ex-spouse who is not providing the court-ordered child support.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2010
    Arsenio
    Can my 401K savings be garnished from a crdit card lawsuit judgement?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      In general, funds in a retirement accounts cannot be seized by creditors, even with a judgment against you. When your retirement account funds are at risk of garnishment is when you are eligible to withdraw them. Once you can take money out without penalty, the creditor may be able to compel you to withdraw money to pay them. The creditor can also block your ability to take any money from the account without paying them. Also, I believe that if you owe money for back child support or for alimony that your retirement funds could be seized through a court order. I advise you to check with your 401(k) plan administrator, to verify that the credit card company's judgment against you can't lead to your funds being taken.
      0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Toni
      I had a judgement against me for a credit card in 2008 and again in 2009 after explaining to them my hardship of being single mother and divorce left me all the debt and going through a hurricane but they don't care, evcen when they try to settle with you its something that is unreasonable and I just started getting garnishment from this so called creditor that had sent me a letter in May 2009 about negotiating but nothing ever transpired so this was a shock esp when I get no child support for over a year and this is the same ex that put me in this bind and I can't get anything out of someone that doesn't have anything and the last time this card was used was 10 yrs ago and this was suppose to be paid off when I refinanced my home in 2008 but obviously overlooked by mortgage company and I even tried to pay a little in Novemeber 2008 in good faith but have not been able to send anything since then due to my living expenses and I'm a commissioned sales rep...and not they have garnished my wages, I'm in shock, I will never get caught up, where is there justice!!!!!
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2010
    Brittany
    Hi, I live in CO and I have a judgement against me for restution from a car accident. The insurace company sued me for $20,000, and now i owe them. They have started garnishing my wages and Im worried they will take my Tax Return...Can they do that? I want to use this money to file bankruptcy but fear they will get it first? I also heard that in CO my earned income credit is exempt, is this true also?? please help!! Thank You
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Generally speaking, a state or federal income tax return is not available for garnishment by a private judgment-debtor. Federal and state agencies can seize a tax return administratively. Consult with a Colorado attorney to learn if Colorado follows this general rule. Since you are planning to file for bankruptcy, this would be a good time to talk with an attorney with experience in bankruptcy to learn if the judgment is dischargeable in bankruptcy.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2010
    qwonny
    this is my first paycheck being garnished but i was never served. i live in new mexico and is wondering what i can do to have the garnishment stopped.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Under New Mexico 2-802. Garnishment "On or before the fourth business day following service of the writ of garnishment, the garnishee shall mail or otherwise deliver to each named judgment debtor or to the judgment debtor's attorney of record a copy of the forms served on the garnishee by the judgment creditor pursuant to Paragraph C of this rule."

      In other words, you should have received a notice. If your wages are exempt from garnishment, then consult with a New Mexico attorney who has experience in employment law. He or she will need to file a pleading with the court to revoke the judgment-creditor's right to garnishment.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2010
    Frank
    I live in Texas and owe 100K in credit card debt. I assume my bank acct is the most vulnerable to garnishment (I own almost nothing). I opened an online bank acct in SC to handle my checking writing needs, since SC does not allow bank garnishments for my situation. But the bank in SC has branches in other states (not TX). If they get a judgment on me in Texas, can they go to one of the branch offices in another state to get to my acct in SC?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Dec, 2010
      Bill
      Whether the state where your bank is headquartered allows wage garnishment is irrelevant. Your residency matters. See the Bills.com resource Texas Collection Laws to learn more. In particular, follow the links on that page that lead to the Texas statutes on wage garnishment and account levy. Consult with a Texas attorney for precise advice on how to insulate your assets.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2010
    I been late on my credit card and tried to work something out with them. I live in PA. I spoke to one of the CC workers and he was rude yelling at me. I told him I was laid off and I tried to work something out before and got no where. I asked for a payment plan for 2 months a will pay the rest in full. He told me I was refusing to pay and is going to send my file out. He got worst with me once I told him that I was back to work. He flipped out at me a threatening garnishing. Now I have two account's one that is just mine and one that I share with my boyfriend. I just tried to make an online payment and to see the account but it tells me I no profile. Can they touch the account I share with my boyfriend?
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Nov, 2010
      Bill
      It is unfortunate you did not name names in your message. I am curious to learn the identity of the credit card issuer that allows its customer service representatives to act in the manner you described. It may be possible that you are dealing with a third-party collection agent, which have a reputation for obnoxious behavior.

      If the original creditor or a collection agent do not receive payments from a debtor, they can sue the debtor. If the debtor loses, then he or she will have a judgment against them, which allows the creditor to ask for a wage garnishment, account levy, or lien depending on the debtor's state laws. In most states, a joint account is fair game for account levy.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2010
    Jessica
    In 2008, I got a partially secured credit card; meaning one of those cards that says you have 300.00 credit, but after they charge their fees, you really have about 70.00 initially. I paid on my card faithfully, and my limit was increased to 800.00. Then, due to other circumstances, I was unable to make my payments and defaulted. With interest charges, my balance was 1455.00 when they closed my account. In July of 2009, the company (or the company that bought them) went to court and obtained a judgment in the amount of 2000.00! I was not even made aware that they were going to court, got a notice from my bank that my account was seized by this judgment. Fast forward to Sept. 2010-I got notice from my employer that this company was garnishing my wages--total amount 1787.00. I got a copy of my credit report and there are two separate judgments from this one card--one was for 2000.00, the other 1455.00, yet they are garnishing my wages for 1787.00 and I have had nearly 1000.00 sitting frozen in the bank for over a year. I live in Maryland; I have never been served with papers, other than what I got from my employer and bank. I also am really confused about the two separate judgments and three separate amounts. I am a single mom with three kids who was barely making ends meet before this, now I absolutely am not making ends meet. And I'm afraid that once they finish collecting on this one judgment, they are going to try to collect for the other. Is what has been done legal? I never even got the chance to defend myself! And I seem to have no recourse now, as the judgment is done already. Please help asap!! Thanks!
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2010
      Bill
      Review the Bills.com resources Served Summons and Complaint and Advice on Court Summons for Debt to understand what should have happened regarding the summons and complaint. Consult with an attorney in your state to learn if proper service of process procedures were followed in your case. If they were not ,the judgment(s) may be vacated. If you are unable to afford an attorney, call your county bar association to get the name of the organization that provides legal assistance to people with low or no income. Make an appointment with that organization, and bring all of the documents you have regarding the debt to that meeting. Ask the attorney or paralegal about what appear to be two judgments against you.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2010
    Jeanette
    My daughter and her ex-husband divorced over 7 yrs ago in the state of Georgia. In their settlement she agreed to pay $2,000.00 to help pay down credit card debt. He calls her every now and again for the money but has never brought any legal action against her for the payment. She's a single mother now, trying to make ends meet. Is she still liable for this after 7 yrs.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      Oct, 2010
      Bill
      I think the issue here is whether any Georgia statute of limitation applies to divorce settlements. My guess -- note that word choice -- is no because in family law settlement agreements the court retains jurisdiction over the parties when there are children involved. My answer assumes several things. First, that Georgia family courts follow this rule. Second, that the child was fathered by the ex-husband mentioned. Third, there is no Georgia case law on this issue. Because my answer is based on assumptions and a guess, your wisest course of action is to consult with a Georgia lawyer who has experience in family law.
      1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2010
    Bill
    I like your theory, namely that Ford asked your bank for the funds in your married name and the bank responded with a "no one here by that name." My guess is that it never occurred to Ford to ask you for aliases when you applied for the loan. Most people do not open and close bank accounts often, and it would surprise me to learn if Ford polled the financial institutions in your area more than once a quarter to find your account.
    1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2010
    Cara
    I have a judgement against me from Ford Motor Company for a repossessed car. I had been laid off when I stopped making payments and now am a stay at home mom. I have no job or assets but I do have a bank account. My question is, when I looked at the judgement online it says something about "no account found." I've had a checking account all this time but it is under my maiden name and my car loan was under my then married name. Can they not find my bank account because I have a different last name? Surely they have my social? And how often do they check for a newly opened bank account?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    b
    Have a question----I have a delinquent credit card with Bankamerica due to being unemployed---I recently deposited a check for some work I completed--Bankamerica froze my account--Garnished the entire balance in my checking account---I do NOT have a judgment against me---Can they do this without a court order / Thank you so much.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    Bill
    My answer assumes you are referring to "Bank of America," the large national bank. It is my understanding that nationally chartered banks do not have the right of offset for delinquent revolving credit accounts. See FDIC Section 226.12--Special Credit Card Provisions for details. The real question is what you can do about it. Consult with an attorney in your state who has consumer law experience to learn if you have a cause of action against your bank.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    sad1986
    hi, I sued my prior employer, and I won the case had a judgment placed on them and now they have not paid and have filed Chapter 7 (bankruptcy), is there anything I can do to garnish the wage that they owe me. I hired an investigator but they told me that I would not be able to get paid because they company no longer has funds because of their bankruptcy. Please help!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    Bill
    Consult with an attorney who has experience in bankruptcy. You have a claim against the estate of the judgment debtor. You have a limited time to file a claim so consult with an attorney immediately. If the judgment debtor has any assets, these will be divided up among the creditors, including you. If the judgment-debtor has no assets, then you and other creditors will receive nothing. You mentioned garnishment. If the judgment is against a natural person (as opposed to a corporation) and the natural person has not declared bankruptcy, then you may be able to garnish that person's wages. Again, consult with an attorney about this option.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    Bill
    Readers: Please do not follow Steve's example and type your comments using all capital letters. All-caps is difficult to read, and comes across as shouting, which I am sure was not Steve's intent.

    Steve, consult with an attorney about setting up a special needs trust into which you will deposit the settlement from your personal injury claim. Usually, these trusts are exempt from creditor collections. The attorney who sets up the trust will be able to advise you on this matter precisely.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    STEVE
    HELLO BILL. I HAVE 2 JUDGEMENTS AGAINST ME IN IOWA. ONE FOR 55K, THE OTHER 22K BUT I CURRENTLY RESIDE IN MASSACHUSETTS. I WAS RECENTLY INVOLVED IN A CAR ACCIDENT AND AM PROBABLY GOING TO GET A SETTLEMENT BECAUSE IT WAS A DRUNK DRIVER THAT HIT ME. IF I GO TO COURT AND GET A SETTLEMENT FOR PERSONAL INJURY ARE THE CREDITORS GOING TO SEIZE THAT MONEY AND IF THEY DO HOW CAN THEY FIND OUT ABOUT IT? I WAS ABOUT TO FILE FOR BANKRUPTCY BEFORE ALL THIS HAPPENED NOW I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO. I STILL HAVE OTHER CREDITORS THAT HAVEN'T FILED A CLAIM AGAINST ME YET. Thanks!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2010
    Bill
    Yes, if your husband received a letter that the court has entered a judgment against him, then it means that the creditor's claims were recognized and the judgment has been won. If you are ordered to fill out your monthly expenses, then you must do so. Garnishments could theoretically be applied to both sources of income and bank accounts could be subject to levies. How much can be garnished from a person's wages depends on the state. Some states do not allow wages to be garnished to collect most judgments. To learn more about your state’s laws regarding the enforcement of judgments, I encourage you to visit the Bills.com State Consumer Protection Laws and Exemptions page. I also recommend that you read what can I do about a judgement? There, you will find information about negotiating with the creditor and also what actions the creditor can take against you post-judgment, such as garnishing wages, levying a bank account, and filing a lien against you. You may want to seek the advice of an attorney, to fully understand what you are facing. Most attorneys will offer a free initial consultation.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    AC
    My husband received a letter saying that the court has entered a judgment against him....does this mean they have already won the judgment? I am so confused- any help would be greatly appreciated. They want us to fill out our monthly expenses again (we did so in January as well). They also know that he works 2 jobs (I am a SAHM).... can they get a wage garnishment from both jobs? Bankruptcy is out of the question so I am unsure what type of lawyer we would need to consult with. Thanks!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    Bill
    Initially nothing will happen. Eventually, the judgment-creditor will wonder why the garnishment stopped. It will then send you a letter asking you to disclose whether you are employed and the name of your employer. If you ignore this letter it will go to court and ask a judge to order you to disclose this information. If you changed your state of residence when you changed jobs you may be subject to different garnishment rules, and the judgment-creditor will need to go to the expense of domesticating the judgment in your new state.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    james
    what happens if a guarnishment 25 per cent of my check everytime on a job i dont work at anymore,and i work at a new job, but i did the loan when i was at the job,
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    Bill
    Please see the Bills.com resource Arizona Collection Laws to better understand your consumer rights and liabilities in Arizona. Ask any follow-up questions you may have on that page.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    mark
    I live in arizona,can a creditor garnish my private long term disability insurance payments for credit card debt? thanks, Mark
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    Bill
    Consult with a Mississippi attorney about this issue. I would be surprised to learn that joint accounts are treated differently from single-owner accounts in any state. In other words, I am not aware that a judgment-creditor take any special precautions to avoid levying/attaching/garnishing a joint account. That is one reason why I recommend people avoid using joint accounts. However, as I stated in my first sentence, consult with a Mississippi attorney to be certain.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2010
    Josh
    I am involved in a Checking Garnishment from a lawsuit. I won the lawsuit and it was then appealed. Their appeal was denied and I filled out the appropriate paperwork to have their checking account garnished. unknowingly the checking account was a joint account. I now have a court date set because of this in a few weeks. If I'm understanding this right it's for the judge to make a decission on wether or not to release the funds from the account? Is that correct? If the judge doesn't release the funds from the account is it possible that he'll order the account stay frozen until the debt is statisfied? I reside in Mississippi. The joint account is with their spouse.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Bill
    I am reluctant to offer a yes/no answer here because I suspect there may be some relevant facts that you did not include in your message. Consult with an attorney in your state who will be able to review the judgment, lien, and title for your property. He or she will advise you according to your state's laws, and will help you write a contract for the sale of the property that protects your interests.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Marissa
    Iam on Social Security have jugement against me. I own a property like a building which the bank has a lien on it can it be sold to a relative for a dollar let him take over paiments .
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Bill
    The answer to your question varies by state because each state has different laws for account levies. (Indeed, some states call what you experienced "attachment" and others call it "account garnishment.") You did not mention your state of residence, so I cannot make a specific observation. Go to the Bills.com statute of limitations and collection laws page and scroll down the list to find your state to learn more about the rules effecting you. Because there is still an outstanding balance on your collection account I think your fear your bank account will be raided again is reasonable.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Eileen
    I have a judgement against me and they took $2000 dollars out of my checking account leaving me with $200. The judgement was for $4000. How often can they take money out of my account and why did they leave funds? Will they take money out of my account every time I deposit or can they only do this once?? I have bills that directly come out of my account and I am afraid to deposit anything.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Bill
    Dispute the entry on your credit report. This may or may not be a successful tactic, but if it is successful it will result in the removal of the offending derogatory entry, and a corresponding bump in your credit score.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Jean
    A couple years ago I moved out of a rental house when I learned the house was scheduled for auction within 11 days. I later took the landlord to court when she would not return my deposit. It turns out that she negotiated with her mortgage company 2 days before the scheduled sale date and the property was not sold. I lost in court (Prince Georges County, Maryland), the judge ruled that I did not give proper notice to the landlord. Figure that one out: I paid the rent timely each month; the landlord did not make the mortgage payment; and I lost in court. Story continues...The landlord then sues me and I have to pay the 3 months remaining on the lease. Court date was first few days in July 2008. I paid the balance the 3rd week of July. Mid-August I receive an email from my employer's legal office that a garnishment has been recieved and I have a certain number days to address the concern before they place an order to garnish my wages; the office could not accept my receipt for payment. Lucky for me I am senior level, with a good reputation, and they give me time to figure out the problem and gather documentation. What I learn after gathering all the documentation is that the garnishment was dated 2nd week in July 2008 (same month) and the payment was never filed as satisfied. I never received notice of the garnishment. Time passes and I apply for a job that required a personal investigation. I then learned that though I satisfied the debt, the satisfaction was still never recorded at the courthouse. I contact my attorney who demands the payment be recorded, of which I receive a copy. I understand the garnishment judgment will sit on my credit report for 7 years. What can I do to minimize its impact? I have considered going back to court; may be worth the cost, but seems so unfair. There was no justifiaction for the landlord to file this, even though I accept it was at her discretion. BTW, during this period the landlord has lost several rental properties to foreclosure and is in bankruptcy protection, from what I read on line. is there anything I can do minimize the impact of this garnishment. I had a good credit core until event.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Bill
    State laws set the statute of limitations on judgments and the length of time varies. You did not mention your state of residence so I cannot venture a guess if the statute of limitations has passed for your judgments. Consult with an attorney in your state to learn the statute of limitations for judgments in your state.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jul, 2010
    Jacki
    I have a few judgments as a result of my divorce in 2002. Nothing has ever been done to collect them until recently (8 years later!). In the past 3 months I have gotten 2 bank account levies for old judgments. My concern is that the others will follow this and we're talking big bucks. Isn't there a statute of limitations for judgment collections? My judgments are all from 2002-2004. Thanks, Jacki
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2010
    candice
    I live in New York State. I was making payment to the collection agengy for a outstanding school balance. The collection agency still had the lawyers garnish my wages since march. I was never served papers and i called to collection agency to find out my balance as of june and it increase by 1500 dollars. Called their lawyer who send me to the NY City Marshalls and told me their court fees, weekly Marshall fees and orginal fee, interest rate from 2003( All loans were pay off as of March). Find out recently that all I owe the school as of March was just Tution fee that was not covered by the loans. my question Can be interest rate of 9% be credited to my account without it actually being a Student loan? Theres any way i can decrease the interest rate? Is it still possible to dispute this at a fair hearing although garnishment started at March?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2010
    Bill
    If the student loan is federal then garnishment can occur without notice. However, if the student loan is private then notice is required. Garnishment is allowed in New York, although 90% of the judgment-debtor's wages are exempt. The 9% interest rate is the maximum allowed by New York law for judgments. In theory, this is negotiable, but I would not expect the creditor to budge on it. Consult with a New York attorney, and ask in particular about your not receiving notice of the garnishment, or possibly the summons to appear.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2010
    Bill
    You cannot afford not to seek counsel from an attorney in your state. See the Bills.com resource Legal Aid to find one in your area who works with people no or low income. Law firms do not issue bench warrants -- courts do. No one has been arrested for debt in the US since the Civil War. However, you can be arrested if you have been ordered by a court to appear and you fail to do so. You mentioned the creditor seizing your home. Unfortunately, you did not mention your state of residence so it is impossible for me to determine the rights of judgment-creditors in your state. Consult with an attorney in your state for precise answers to your questions.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2010
    Donna
    This site is the answer to my prayers. I need a response today, please. Discover Card sued me, I was served Oct 2008. I couldn't afford an Attorney. I have not been able to find one willing to work out a viable payment plan. I filed a response at the prothonotary's office,defending myself against the lawsuit/Discover Card. About six months later I rec'd a letter in the mail stating "the motion for summary judgement filed by the plaintiff shall be determined on briefs alone without oral argument" because defendant didn't file "Praecipe for Argument" by Oder of Court date 4/21/09. To make a long story short, I don;t even know what a praecipe is and I never got anything saying I had to file one. Six months after that, (Dec 3rd, 2009), I got a letter, Discover card won a Judgement. Ok...Now....this past week, I rec'd two letters from the law firm that rep. Discover...one is dated May 17, one is dated May 18. I rec'd the one dated 18th first, on May 29th. It is giving me 30 days to fill out a paper listing all of my assetts and making threats if I fail to do so, UNLESS I make "acceptable payment arrg" before the 30 days is up. The letter dated 17th gives me 10 days. I rec'd the letter on Sat. and 10 days would be today, June 1st. I\Unless I make "acceptable payment arrangements" by today Discover Card MAY issue a bench warrant for my arrest. The law firm reoresenting Duscover is not yet open. It's in Pgh, an hour away. I left a msg...I want them to put in writing the reason they MAY issue a bench warrant, the reason two different people wrote me two different letters, the reason they wrote one day after the other, giving me 10 days then 30 days.....both say that they will take my house. Can they take my home?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Bill
    Susan: I am assuming the garnishment is related to your breaking the lease on the property you lived in with your ex-fiance. You did not mention who signed the lease. I am assuming you did. If your ex-fiance also signed it he is also liable. However, if you both signed the lease you are both jointly and severally liable, which means whoever sued you can collect the entire amount from one, the other, or both in whatever proportion they wish. You almost certainly have a cause of action against your ex-fiance. Consult with an attorney in your state regarding this matter.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Susan
    This is a 2-part question... Before I begin THANK YOU for what you do! I lived with my fiance in Indiana for 5.5 years. Before we broke off our relationship, we rented a house jointly. In the end, he refused to leave & I was forced to place a deposit elsewhere. His refusals began as threats, but dissolved into a mutual agreement that he would take over the house because I'm physically unable to maintain it anyway. He had me write a "blanket" letter that he planned to use to get help to get caught up on rent for that month and get utility help. At least that was my understanding. The letter stated that he was to be independent of my resources, which were always at least 3x his. In the end, he left anyway. Not only did he leave, but he left a mess. I went back over there and cleaned, but the garage was left messy. Otherwise it was ok. A part of the rental agreement was appliances. They were furnished, but over the first few months first the washer went, so we used ours...then the gas stove began leaking gas. We were forced to turn the gas off after every use. The landlord had a property manager & so I was unable to contact him directly, but rather had to go through this manager. I had a stove that I offered to use, but it needed knobs. He told me he would get some. He never did. Over 9 months passed with this situation. Then the landlord had to come over due to yet another appliance dying....the fridge. He placed another, but it was leaning on one side and leaked water all over. So again, I was forced to use my own fridge. I've read Indiana rentor rights and it states that if a property owner rents with appliances supplied that they are responsible for their upkeep. They didn't. He did finally replace the stove after living in the house 10 months. He never replaced the fridge or washer. I used mine. So my ex skipped out on the house and he sued me. My ex moved to Illinois and still makes a very low income & so I am the one being garnished solely. I'm a single mom of 2 teens & they're taking 500/mo. right now. The total was $3300 and I've already paid $2200. I feel that I've paid more than my part of this. Is there anything I can do? Obviously I contest the amount owed, but I was in surgery and recovery while all of this was taking place and wasn't aware. Not only that I was never informed of garnishment...it just started and I knew what it was because I don't owe anything else like that. He works. Although I make more, it seems to me that the court shouldn't be allowed to pick and choose who pays based on who makes more. If they're going to take 25% from me, it should be the same for him. Not only that, it seems that the debt should have been split... but obviously they know the debt will be paid faster through me & that's not right! It shouldn't matter. Is my only recourse to sue him for his part? I still have the letter I gave him & also know who he provided it to. I have a one line scribbled letter from him requesting that I write it as well as we weren't talking at the time. Thanks again...
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Bill
    Scott: I would be guessing if I gave you an answer because a) I have not seen the Web page you are referring to, and b) I would most likely be unfamiliar with the local court that posted that notice. Call the clerk of the court who posted that notice and ask him or her exactly what the notice means. Pose your question as a general question, as in "What does it mean when your court posts a notice stating 'Court Docket'? Does that mean a judgment has been entered or a hearing is pending?" And so on. Do not ask, "What should I do?" or similar questions because you are asking the clerk for legal advice, which he or she is not allowed to give you. Alternatively, consult with an attorney in your area who has experience in civil litigation.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Scott
    I was online recently checking another court case when I noticed a judgement lein had been filed on 3/30/10. The Court Docket simply states "Court Docket" with case number, the day the lein filed and amount and no other entries except my name and the creditors name. Does this mean the judgement still has to be heard in court and that I should be getting service? I have been going round and round with this creditor for almost 10 years and had paid them about half or what I owe but the judgement still shows full amount...
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Bill
    Your question is impossible to answer because you did not mention your state of residence. Regardless, this is a question for your attorney to answer, who is familiar with the particulars of your case and can review your documents in person.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Scott
    had a garnishment on my bank account for back child support i was already paying but the clearing house was holding the money...long story but atlas number changed and ex-wife's attorney didnt do a good enough check to see why there wasnt any money paid to the old number. i have not been served any paperwork from their attorney on the garnishment - is there a time limit for contesting a garnishment and how would i obtain the case number or garnishment papers to contest when they wont reply to my request?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Bill
    Arizona is a community property state, so the "community" can be liable for judgments against one of the spouses. Consult with an Arizona attorney -- perhaps your bankruptcy attorney -- about this matter. He or she will be able to interview you, review the judgment, and with a broader and deeper understanding of your issues advise you precisely.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Scott
    Can a garnishment against me prior to a new marriage be passed along to my new wife? My ex-wife is trying to get my for something and if I file bankruptcy it should remove the judgement however I dont know if it will pass over to my new wife if the judgement was taken out prior to this marriage. we live in AZ.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Bill
    Impossible to answer your question without knowing your state of residence. See State Statutes of Limitations for an overview of each state's laws. I have written in detail about a handful of states, the links to which you can see in the table on the page I just mentioned.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2010
    Kia
    I am about o be sued for a car accident. I am currently not working. If I file income taxes, can they garnish to pay any judgements?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    Tom
    Thank you for the swift answer. I actually incurred the debt in California (it is a civil judgment against me). I live and work in Massachusetts. I will contact lawyers in New Hampshire and get their take on it. The fact that it is *not* cut and dried gives me hope. Thanks.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    Bill
    Tom, it depends is the quick answer... but simply moving states is not a guarantee that the new state's law and collection laws will be applied to you. As I have written before regarding a reader who incurred debt in Hawaii and moved to Virginia, your question seems simple, but the underlying issue crosses into what is known in the legal profession as "conflict of laws" and "remedies." Regarding the conflict of laws issue, there are many ways each state can decide how to handle a conflict of laws question in regards to contracts. I will not discuss them here, but the two primary are lex loci delicti, and Restatement (Second) of Conflict of Laws. In contract conflicts, most states follow the Restatement Second of Conflict of Laws, using a "significant contacts" approach when deciding a conflict of laws issue. In the absence of a choice of law by the parties to a contract, the law of the state with the "most significant relationship" to the contract will by applied. My guess -- note that word choice -- is that because you were in Mass, were residing in Massachusetts when you incurred the debt, and presumably made one or more payments in Massachusetts, a New Hampshire court will use Massachusett's statute of limitations and collection laws when deciding which procedural law to apply. However, I hasten to add that I am not licensed to practice law in Mass, and want to make clear that conflict-of-laws cases usually turn on their own collection of facts. Accordingly, I urge you to consult with a New Hampshire attorney who has experience in consumer law or civil litigation to get a more precise answer to your question. See the Bills.com resource Collections Agencies, Collections Laws and Your State's Statute of Limitations to learn more about the nuances of collections, and what the statute of limitations does and does not mean. I hope this information helps you Find. Learn & Save.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    Tom
    I work in Massachusetts, and I am currently fighting for a Chapter 7 that I may not win. My creditor attempted to garnish my wages, but that was stopped when I filed for bankruptcy. New Hampshire is not far away, and I would consider moving there if NH law will apply to me. Can the creditor force my employer to garnish according to MA law, or would it depend on the much more favorable (to me) laws of New Hampshire? Also, I understand NH is a community property state. If my wife does not move to NH, would her savings be safe? My creditor is quite vicious, and would certainly pursue her savings if he could.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    Bill
    Statutes of limitation are local to each jurisdiction. In other words, they vary by state. Consult with an attorney in your state who has experience in consumer law. My guess -- note that word choice -- is that your state has no statute on the books regarding a statute of limitations for municipal entities, and that the rule followed in your state was made by a judge. This may require some research for a local attorney to answer precisely. If your mother is a new owner of the property she may have purchased title insurance. She would be remiss if she did not file a claim for the sewer and water bills with the title insurance provider.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    P
    What about Utilities and water companies? My mother received a letter from the sewage authority that told her that a lien would be placed against her property unless a balance that was apparently unpaid by a previous tenant (the property is a duplex - part rental, part primary residence) is paid within 30 days. She contacted the previous tenant who said they paid it off but cannot provide proof - it's been over 7 years since the last payment was made and all records are gone. This is the first communication she has received about this situation - can they put a lien on the property for such an old debt for which no attempt to collect has been made in over 7 years? Does the 4 year statute of limitations apply to the water company (when she inquired about the debt, she learned that there is actually a larger debt owed to the water company in addition to the smaller debt for sewage).
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    Bill
    A judge will look at all of the facts you and ex-spouse provide when deciding if your ex-spouse is trying to hide assets by burying them in a 401(k). It would be foolish for me answer your question yes or no based on hearing only half of the story.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2010
    Bonnie
    My ex-husband was ordered to pay 50% of certain bills but has not done so, and I had to pay to keep the house from foreclosure. I will be going to court soon to get the reimbursement judgment. He has been putting a lot of money in his 401K to keep it from me. Can we get a garnishment against the 401K?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Bill
    If you are in a community property state, the answer to your question is, "Your creditors may be able to seek a remedy from your spouse if you live in a community property state and your state allows that." Creditors seeking a judgment from a married debtor in a community property state do not often seek a remedy from a judgment-debtor's spouse, but it may be within their rights. You do not mention your state, so I do not know if that remedy is available to your creditors. One last thought: It is generally not a good idea to believe legal advice from creditors. Their advice is usually incomplete or wrong, and is always self-serving.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    KATHY
    I had Bussiness lines of credit and which I am liable for I closed the Company I will be sued by creditors they said they will go after my spose he is not on any of them all unsecured debt I no longer own any thing my spose has rentals but only in her name but I am on some of the loans. can they they put liens on them?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Bill
    Assuming the creditor will domesticate the judgment, and the state you are moving to allows garnishments, the answer to your question is yes. Texas, however, is one of several states that exempts 100% of a debtor's wages from garnishment. See State Consumer Protection Laws and Exemptions for more.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    whytfrog
    We are about to have State Farm Bank try to garnish my husband's wages for a vehicle we turned back in to them. We are considering moving to TX to be closer to his family and we're wondering if the garnishment could continue to be taken from his checks once we moved? If it started in CO can it carry over to TX?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2010
    Cindy
    I have an active judgment as shown in Maryland Case Search, but the judgment was paid off 1 month ago. The lawyer did not file an Order of Satisfaction, however, he did send me a signed form entitled, "Order of Satisfaction." I noticed the DC/CV number is incorrect. Can I take the paperwork that I have and pay and file an official Order of Satisfaction? Thank you for your advice.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Jeff
    I live in California. I had a judgement against me for a credit card debt. I was notified before hand that a wage garnishment would be in forced and notified about the amount. My employer did a wage garnishment and it was paid off in a few months. I just found out that I have another judgement against me from another credit card company and just noticed that there is money being taken out of my paycheck. I was never informed that I would have a wage garnishment and not informed of that amount that would be garnished. Legally am I supposed to be notified if a wage garnishment has been issued and the amount that will be taken out? Also, how many times can a wage garnishment be in forced before an employer can fire you. Thanks for your advice.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    See the Bills.com resource California Wage Garnishment to learn more about the issues you raise in your question. Regarding your question about your employer, California follows the federal rule. An employee cannot be terminated for one garnishment. Beyond one, well, the employer is free to do what it wishes.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    A judgment-creditor can continue its collection efforts until the judgment is satisfied (i.e., paid).
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    naomi
    i live in nebraska and my med. insurance did not pay a 140.00 er visit as it was supposed to do. i received a judgment from a bill collector for a garnish amount of 316.00 for this bill, my employer took out 25% and sent if to the hospital. now several months later i receive another summons for wage garnishment. i called the lawyer on the summons and was told that they already got their judgment in august, i said i know and that this amount is different and that they were already pai through garnishment. she just says she has the right to refile. and hangs up. how many times can they collect on the same bill?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    You do not mention if the loans were private or federal. If they were private, then you should have received adequate notice of the summons and complaint. If you had not, then any judgment resulting can be reversed. This is a common civil procedure question, and any litigator doing civil work can help you if you wish to go that route. Your idea of contacting the law firm representing the creditor is sound, and you would be wise to stress in your conversation that the defective notice will knock out the judgment -- in other words you have a bargaining chip in the negotiations. If the student loan was federal, then the Dept. of Education can pursue garnishment or levy administratively, and you have less leverage here if that is the case.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    T.J.
    Hi Bill, First, thank you for taking the time to answer these questions. Lots of good info here. I checked my credit report a few months ago and found that it was good. Nothing negative on it. Recently, I enrolled in a credit monitoring program in which I'd found that in the few months between checking my report, I'd had a judgement against me for just under $1,000 for student loans I'd had about ten years ago. I had never received any court summons or supporting documentation regarding the case. Upon further investigation, they had sent letters to addresses in which I never lived. To the best of my knowledge, I'd paid those loans off via garnishments in 2004 so I disputed them. Last week I got the dispute back saying the debt was valid and this morning received a letter regarding the charges (most likely because of the dispute updating the records with correct information). I called the school and confirmed that indeed the charges are valid (the garnishments were for separate loans) and that's fine, I'll pay them. My question is that if I wasn't given any notice (due process?) about this court date, do I have any recourse as far as having the judgement removed from my record? I'm going to call the attorney collecting the debt and work out payment with them. I hope I can do something since, had I know about this, I would have paid immediately thus avoiding the negative impact to my public record. I don't assume the collector could/would be willing to help with that. I live in Ohio and it looks like the judgement was granted in October 2009. Thanks in advance, I really appreciate it.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    Regarding your question about garnishing Social Security benefits, see the Bills.com resource Can a creditor be allowed to do Social Security garnishment? Regarding your other questions, see the Bills.com resource Collections Advice. The Texas attorney general offers an array of Web pages devoted to Texas consumers' rights, and specifically Texas debt law and consumers' rights in debt collection situations.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    cyndie
    roofing contractor threatening to put lien on my house and/or file theft of services against me for the 7000 I owe them. I am disabled and I use the insurance payment to pay bills. I am in Texas and this amount is a state jail felony. What do I need to do? They have not filed anything yet that I know of. hatdo I need to expect? I offered to pay 50 a month they declined it then I offered to pay 500 a month and they said they would talk to their attorney. If they put a lien against my house can they get a garishment of my ss or retirement.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Bill
    The law in Louisiana different from the rest of the US, and therefore I am reluctant to state that you should have received a summons and complaint, which would be your notice of the lawsuit that gave rise to the judgment. Therefore, I urge you to contact an attorney in your state who will be able to give you a precise answer.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Feb, 2010
    Paul
    I live in Louisiana. I had co-signed a loan for my brother early 2007. He filed bankruptcy chapter 13 late in 2007. He converted to chapter 7 October 08. the trustee began liquidating his assets to pay off his debts. In December 08, i was sued for the loan I had co-signed on. I was never billed for it or even made aware that I had become the one responsible for it. The bankruptcy trustee had it on the claims registry to be paid. My question is this- Shouldn't I have been notified and asked if I wanted to make payments or at least been told that I was now resposible so I could make some kind of arrangements to pay it? Instead they just sue me and get a judgement to garnish my wages. That only took a minute to go on my credit report.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Bill
    As stated above, "Many states exempt certain amounts and certain types of funds from bank levies, so you should carefully review your state’s laws to find out if your bank account can be levied." See the Bills.com resource Can a creditor be allowed to do Social Security garnishment? If the funds in the account in question come solely from your disability income, ask the bank or credit union to put a notation on the account indicating such, and that the funds may not be levied.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    jaime
    I have a levy on my bank account, for 17000, they alredy took 1800 o december 2009, i am on dishability its all the income i have, I have 5 childrens, my spouse doesn't work, i live in california, can this levy affects my real property?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Bill
    This reminds me of a bar exam question but with fewer facts. There are not enough facts in your message for me to offer a meaningful answer. Accordingly, you need to consult with an attorney in your state who has experience setting up corporations. He or she will be able to advise you a) if you have a cause of action against the previous owner, b) what your options are to resolve your tax issue, c) how to resolve the pending legal action with the previous owner, and d) how to reorganize your business.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    michele
    I have an incorporated business. I was sold property and the business. Did not relize that proof of income from seller was a lie. Made monthly payments for 4 years, to previous owner still had 2 years to pay...fell behind in payroll taxes because of low revenue/economy...paid seller over taxes...because of tax levy...had to stop payment to previous owner for businss loan. Went personaly bankrupt. Could not write loan off because it is tied to the business. Still personaly own property (upsidedown) and current on mortgage. Just received judgment from previous owner for 60,000. Can I just liquidate company and recreate a new company? maybe a non profit since this business is not profitable but gives so much for our community.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Bill
    See What Are My Debt Consolidation Options? to gain an understanding of the paths to debt freedom that are available to you.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Nancy
    I received a court summons in the mail yesterday saying I am being Sued for a Wa MU credit card debt for 1600.00 from a collection lawyer. I have a 300.a month car payment i am behind two months i pay 1000. rent plus utilities and i am current with all of my other 13 credit cards. I thought WA MU went out of business because i did not get any correspondence from them. I am struggling to keep paying the minimums, about 400.00 for all 13cards. And I live o P-nut Butter and jelly and sometimes the $1.00 Mc Donalds menu. The IRS just approved me as a hardship case. I just worry all the time now. I bring home $2000.00 a month. Is there anything i can do? I can't even afford to file bankrupcy. I am 61 yrs old.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Bill
    It would be folly for me to predict what a judge will decide. If the judge is sympathetic, you present yourself well, and the judge believes your testimony then you have a good chance of success. Please let me know the outcome of the hearing.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Tamisha
    Thanks Bill for the information, I have old tax doucments to show I no longer lived at that address I also have a old ripped copy of my driver's license to show when I change my address to my new apartment, I just want to ask the judge if I can get the money back that they garnished so I can get court up on my rent so I will not be back in court for that at well. Do you think if I set up some type of payment plan they will give me my money back, or will they put the towards the debt...I even got a shut off notice from my engery company today....I can't even sleep
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Bill
    Attend the hearing. Bring the documentation that you described in your message above. Explain to the judge that you had improper notice of the hearing and that you want postponement of the hearing so that you can discuss a settlement with the creditor. Read Collections Advice to understand more about what you may face in the hearing and your legal rights.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Tamisha
    I went to a school here in Michigan in 2001 my employer at the time offered tution assistance...I took advantage of that program and enrolled in some classes...I was in an abusive relationship and could not finish the class so I dropped out...In 2004 I left my crazy ex and moved out and in with my mother....In December of 2009 I get a letter from my employer stating that I was being garnished by a lawyer.....I contacted the law firm and they said that the account had been forwarded to them in 2004 I asked if I could make some type of arrangements they told me no I would have to pay the debt in full..I contacted my previous employer who advised that the only time that the tutition assistance voucher would be valid is if I pass the class with a c...Which I did not because I dropped out......After that I contacted the court they served the summons and complaint to an old address where I lived with my crazy ex boyfriend....I never got anything and now I am being garnished about to lose my apartment because I can't pay my rent...I have proof that I no longer lived at that address because I filed a PPO against my ex and moved in with my mother...I filed an objection to the garnishment based on the fact I was not served at the correct address....I am not denying the debt because at this point I know why it was not paid and I am willing to pay I just didn't know at the time. My court date is tomorrow is there anything I can do to see if this will go in my favor....
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Bill
    Maybe, and the answer depends on your state laws. There is one way to get a definitive answer to your question: Call the constable. It is unfortunate you did not deal with this issue sooner when you had more options for resolving the debt. I urge you to consult with an attorney in your state who has experience in bankruptcy law.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Linda
    I have a judgement file against me for about 20,000. i recieved a letter from the constable stating to call immediately to discuss payment of an execution of judegement. will i still be able to make payment arragements and not have my property seized
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Bill
    It is not possible for me to answer your question for two reasons. First, each state has different garnishment rules and I do not know your state of residence, so therefore it is impossible for me to say what rules apply to you. Second, garnishment rules vary depending on the reason for the garnishment. Child support is treated differently than a credit card debt, for example. You do not mention the reason for the garnishment, so even if I knew which state you reside in it would not be possible for me to say for certain if your garnishment was allowed.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jan, 2010
    Marlene
    can a judgement garnish a person on long term disabiity payments? I am not on Social security diability, but disability payments are being sent from ann insurance company Thanks
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Madison
    Thank you so much, I have already had my direct deposit stopped. My next step will be contacting them to work out a payment plan.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Bill
    The judgment creditor can continue its collection efforts until the debt is settled. In this situation, contact the judgment-creditor and negotiate a payment plan. Simultaneously, contact the human resources or payroll department at your employer and either change the account into which your wages are deposited or change your pay so that you receive a live check, which you can deposit into an account of your choosing. You cannot do this for long, however. The judgment-creditor has demonstrated it is willing to exercise all of its rights when collecting the debt, and a wage garnishment (if allowed in your state) may be the judgment-creditor's next action. Therefore, as I mentioned, it is important to open negotiations now.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Yvonne
    i just recieved notice that my bank account has been garnished. It was garnished for 3100 dollars and the judgement was like 6600 dollars. They haven't garnished my wages as of yet. I was told that they can garnish my bank account for whats in it at that time and then if that doesnt cover the debt they have to get another judgement to garnish again...is that true? Or will the bank just freeze my account until the debt is paid (worried becuase my check is direct deposited and I'm the only one working and we have a small child so we would have NO money).
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Bill
    The attorney you spoke to represents the judgment-creditor and not you. He or she is duty-bound to speak the truth, but is also duty bound to represent his or her client zealously. Therefore, consult with ANOTHER attorney in Missouri regarding Missouri Revised Statute Chapter 525 -- Garnishments and ask your question again. Missouri's statutes regarding garnishment are somewhat intricate. However, I find nothing to support the judgment-creditor attorney's contention that no notice is required.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Bilan
    I had just recently discovered that my wages have been garnished without any type of notice..My employers did not tell me and I was also not summons to appear in court. When I finally found out (through my check) I contacted the lawyers office that is suing me and they told me that they were not obligated to summons me or give me any thing stating my wages were going to be garnished. Is that legal in missouri?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Bill
    The answers to your questions are dependent on your state of residence, which you did not include in your message. The statute of limitations for collecting a debt varies by state and the date that a derogatory item on a credit report is a federal rule. The two have no relationship legally. See the first two sections of Charge Off, Credit Report, Statute of Limitations & Merged Creditors to learn more.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Renee
    what is the statue of limitation that an attorney can file on behave of a creditor. An attorney filed to garish my check in one county in which I lived back in 2007 at that time i became unemployed. so therefore it was unsuccessful. Never heard from him until recently, he has filed against me again in another county district for the garnishment. The bad debt was to come off my credit this year. How many times can a lawyer file for garishment. and why didn't he go back to the original garishment?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Bill
    I agree with your SC attorney's opinion -- you need to find an attorney in Utah willing to handle this case if the garnishment was handled by the Utah courts. Be persistent in trying to find an attorney in Utah experienced in consumer law. You can file this yourself, but then you are not present in Utah and have no knowledge of Utah's rules. By the time you educate yourself the garnishment will continue to eat away at your paycheck.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Linda
    Judgement filed in south carolina for mortgage 2002 for past due payments. Work with creditor to get payments caught up. Mortgage company sold mortgage to third party. They took us to court for the entire balance or the removal of the home in 2007. They have since garnished my wages through courts in Utah where my home office in March 2008. They took the home in June 2009 and my wages are still being garnished. Spoke to a lawyer in South Carolina and he said the original judgement reads after the home has been removed the jugdment has been settled. He suggested we get a lawyer in Utah to help stop the garnishment since it was illegal in the first place because of South Carolina exemption. I cannot get any help from Utah. Is there petition the courts myself?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    Bill
    At this point, with the judgment in hand, the creditor has no obligation to validate the debt. Therefore, your mother needs to consult with an attorney in Pennsylvania who has experience in consumer law. Your mother should ask the attorney if she can ask the court to vacate the judgment while the debt is being validated. This is an uphill battle, and should have been done before the case went to trial.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2009
    phil
    My Mom lives in PA and received a judgement against her from a collection agency who claim they bought out the debt from First USA. Can she still request a debt validation? Is this a smart course of action at this point or a waste of time since she didnt do so before the judgment was set forth?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2009
    Bill
    Put together 30% of the remaining balance, contact the creditor, and offer to pay-off the balance in a lump-sum settlement. See Debt Negotiation Advice to learn tactics and strategies for dealing with collection agents.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2009
    Sarah
    I have a garnishment against me for a student loan in the state of Georgia. My wages have currently been garnished for a year and now I am wondering if there is any way I can get this garnishment removed. I now have a good job and would be more than happy to start making payments but the amount that is being garnished is rather high and causing me to not be approved for a mortgage.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2009
    Bill
    A creditor can demand an employer honor a garnishment order regardless of the location of the employer's headquarters or payroll office. If the creditor can show the court that a debtor's pay is being deposited directly into the account of a debtor's family member, the court will probably allow the creditor to levy the contents of that account.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2009
    Erden
    I have many judgments filed against me in the state of MI. I am working for an out of state company, who has sent me out of the country to work for them. I do not have a bank account set up in MI. My checks are deposited into my dad’s checking account to protect me from a writ. Can the creditor contact my out of my state employer and garnish my wages directly from my employer? Can they garnish my dad’s account? Currently I am working under the radar so I can re-establish myself financially, and file bankruptcy due to massive debt accumulated from a business I owned. I must elude theses problems temporarily for that reason! Thanks for your HELP!!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2009
    inwholise
    Everybody STOP, educate yourself. DO not pay anything on an unsecured debt(credit card) that has expired. Not one effin penny, or you'll begin your states statute of limitations all over again. GO to a judge and tell him the alleged (debt always alleged, never admit to it) debt is expired, the judgment should be thrown out, period.Credit cards cannot throw you in jail or have you arrested. They cannot take your house (homestead it anyway to protect yourself) most debt collectors threaten you with fake litigation charges to dupe a person into paying a debt that has already expired. They cannot garnish... social security, unemployment, child support and many other forms of income. Check with your legal aid center. BE your own best advocate. Become familiar with The Fair Debt Collections and Practices Act. Download a phone script, threaten to sue (and have proof, recordings, mail etc) any debt collector that breaks the law. Know your rights. And for anybody who is married. My sister's husband owed over 20, 000 in credit card debt and they never came after her. Take your money out of the bank if you have to. NEVER agree to any payment arrangement. The debt collectors paid pennies for your debt, the credit card companies already wrote off your debt after 180 days of default. It's nothing but a big scam. Watch Dateline's March 27, 2009 episode on venal debt collectors and I guarantee, you will never send this vile flotsam business one dime. EDUCATE YOURSELF. KNOW YOUR RIGHTS. go to your nearest legal aid center, or law school...BE proactive...always send your letters certified...AND DO NOT LET DEBT COLLECTORS VERBALLY ABUSE OR TERRORIZE YOU....EVER....
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Bill
    First, do not believe legal advice from collection agents. The information many collection agents provide consumers is usually wrong or incomplete, and is always self-serving. The truth is that no one has gone to jail for debt since the Civil War. Unscrupulous collections agents will invent criminal laws such as "theft by check" in an attempt to frighten consumers who are unaware of their rights into making a payment immediately. To understand more about your rights in the collections process, read Collections Advice. My guess -- note that word choice -- is that either Telecheck or Americredit sold your account to the collection agent that contacted you. On the other hand, you may have been scammed by someone who got a copy of your credit report. If you have documentation, such as letters from the collection agent, then the chances of you being defrauded are lower than if some voice called you from out of the blue. In the future if you are ever in this situation again, send a payment only after receiving a settlement offer on paper.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Chris
    Back in March 2006 I attempted to purchase a car (in Florida) and dealership required a down payment. I did not have the funds available then but dealership allowed me to give them a postdated check of $1700 approved through Telecheck. Unfortunately I was not able to honor that check and I also was not able to make payments so the car was repossessed a few months later. Both Telecheck and Americredit tried to contact me for payment but were unable to pay either one. Had then moved to Tenn in Jan 2007. Had not heard from either until I got a call from a company called Check Collection & Assoc in Mar of 2009 saying they were representing Telecheck and that I would go to jail that night if I did not pay the $1700 owed. This scared me so much since this was a "bad check", and I know you can go to jail for bad checks, that I paid them but then I thought about it and contacted Telecheck and they told me that they did't have any records of this debt anymore and didn't know who these people were. Was this a scare tactic and if so, what's my recourse.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    Bill
    The Oregon State Bar offers a helpful guide to Oregon small claims court procedures. I suggest you consult with an attorney in Oregon in the city where the judgment in entered to investigate the case further and determine who the plaintiff is and the amount of the judgment. In Oregon, the small claims court can hear a case with amount in controversy up to $7,500, so the judgment against you may be substantial. I recommend you ask your Oregon attorney your excellent civil procedure question. You may be right -- there may have been a defective notice given you under Oregon law. However, that is best answered by an Oregon attorney who can review all of the facts and circumstances surrounding your case.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2009
    ithr
    My question involves small claims court in the state of: Oregon. I used to live in Oregon, I moved to California in Sept 2004. I just found out about a judgment against me in Oregon. It appears to be from Oct 06, I don't have a copy of the judgment and I’m not sure what I was sued for. They had a Postal Annex address that the company I worked for use to have. I tried to call, the Postal Annex is no longer there. I'm wondering what to do. Can I request that it be thrown out due to me not living in the state or the fact that I was not personally served?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2009
    Bill
    Karmela, I think the first thing that you need to do is find out the exact details of the judgement order that was passed. As far as the papers not being served to you, you should know that the creditor is only obligated to send you a notice by mail to the last known address that they have on file. If, in the interim, you happened to move, it would be your responsibility to update them with your current address. Once they prove to court that they had sent you the notice and if you did not appear in court, the court will pass a default judgment against you. Once a creditor obtains a judgment from court, they follow the state limits with respect to the amount that they can garnish your wages. In the state of Georgia, the limit is 25% of your paycheck. The garnishment will continue till you repay the amount that you owe as per the judgement that was passed. I suggest that you contact an attorney to determine the status of this judgment and your available options.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2009
    Karmela
    My check is currently being garnished for a vehicle that was repossed in 2005. It has been garnished once and I was never served with any papers summons to go to court and never had a fair trail. So the garnishment lasted for 6 months and now my check is being garnished a second time for the same thing. I would like to know if they can garnish a second time with only one judgement and how coud they garnish my check without ever serving me with any papers to go to court. And also when my check was being garnished the first time they were charging me a very high interest rate toward my balance. I cannot afford to have my check garnished at 25% because I am unable to afford basic neccesities with a child. Is their any way I can get the garnishment dismissed on the ground that I was never served properly or if I cannot get it dismissed can I at least get it lowered from 25% to 10% or 5%? I live in the state of georgia please assist.
    0 Votes

    • 35x35
      May, 2011
      SUSAN
      I am unsure as to the laws in your state, but Florida has the head of household exemption. If you can prove you are head of household and have dependents you can have the garnishemet waved.. You still owe the money, they just can't garnish the wages or bank account. Again, this was for Florida please check your states laws. Hope this helps.
      0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2009
    dina
    I live in Maryland and a foreign judgment was file against me in DC. The creditors company took the judgment to DC because they found out that I work in the city and the judgment / garnishment in Maryland was dropped by creditor because of lack on employment. Now, what concerns me is that this creditor has been receiving some form of payment from me each month. Now no official pay amount has been set up by me or by the creditor but I send them something each month. This debt is over seven years old there where times of hardship and low wage employment but I did my best to send them something. Now, the creditor is trying to get almost 9,000.00 from me with this garnishment when in fact I have sent them over 2200.00 in money orders to them. I have set in motion to take this case to court to have the garnishment reduced. I will present to the court most of my receipts dating back to 2004 to the present and let the courts know that my job is a temporary job where I do not have normal work weeks or continuous pay periods. The paycheck from which the first garnishment took place was the first pay I had in three weeks. Now, my issue is that I can not prove that the amount of money I said I sent to the creditor was sent to them. I contacted one of the Money Order Company’s via phone and I can check on whether the money order was cashed up until a certain month and year but to obtain an actual copy of who the money order was made out too would cost more than to send a payment towards the debt. Now, I just flying by the seat of my pants here but I want to know whether or not I’m headed in the right direction to going back to court and settling this. Thanks in advance for any advice that you may give me.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    AGordon
    Paul, I don't think that you can garnish sources of income that are from SSI or pension payouts. I think that a bank account who has a source of funds from fixed income also has exemptions from being levied, but ask an attorney.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2009
    Bill
    Generally speaking, your residence determines which garnishment rules apply to you. See the the Bills.com State Consumer Protection Laws and Exemptions page for what percentage of your wages are exempt from garnishment.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2009
    John
    i live in south carolina but work in north carolina, right across the state line. Can my wages be garnished for a judgement for credit card bils?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2009
    Bill
    I am not a Pennsylvania attorney, so I do not know the intricacies of PA civil law to give you the definitive answer. My advice is to send the landlord a certified letter containing copies of your correspondence with the court, and ask him or her to send the court a letter explaining that the debt has been satisfied and the lien should be removed. If that is not effective, then you will need to contact a PA attorney to determine your rights.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2009
    d
    As a college student my roommates and I had a problem with a landlord in Pennsylvania and took him to court in his hometown. Of course we lost. We were ordered to pay $4000. We agreed to split it three ways. One of the roommates never paid her share and there was a balance of $500. I was never informed of this. I went to get a loan and had a lien for $4000. I immediately paid the outstanding balance. The landlord then said he wanted the court fees to remove the lien. I paid it. I kept in touch with the courts via letters about everything going on. Once it was paid I figured it would be removed as promised. A year later and I found out it was removed. I wrote to the courts and they said they can't do anything. Originally they told me he had a certain amount of time to remove it. What do I do now?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Aug, 2009
    Bill
    Once a judgment is passed, it is difficult to go back to court to re-adjust the terms. I would suggest that you consult with a qualified attorney to see what your options are at this point.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    Mark
    In the legal trade, what you are asking are known as "civil procedure" questions. One very important element in an effective lawsuit is the defendant receiving an adequate notice of the filing of the lawsuit. You mention that you were never served papers. I'm guessing that what you mean is that you never had a process server show up at your door, hand you an envelope while saying, "You are served!" like we see in the movies. Notice by that means may not be required in Washington -- I don't know civil procedure law in Washington. In some states all the plaintiff (the creditor in this case) need do is send a certified letter to the defendant's last known address. Talk to an attorney in Washington and ask him if the creditor gave you adequate notice of the lawsuit. If he or she doesn't think so, discuss the option of fighting summary judgment. A judge may agree you did not receive adequate notice of the lawsuit and throw out the summary judgment that paved the way for the wage garnishment. Keep in mind, however, that if the summary judgment is dismissed and the garnishment is removed, this will not make the debt disappear. The creditor may restart the process, only this time making certain you have adequate notice. If you are able to reset the clock, as it were, perhaps that would be a good time to open a negotiation with the creditor on repaying the debt so that both of you can avoid the expense of going to trial.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    Lori
    I live in the State of Washington, Clark County. I was never served papers, yet a judgment was made against me and I'm now being garnished. Is this legal or can I fight it and/or will their never serving me make the judgment void? Will they be able to refile? Thanks for your help!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    Bill
    For things like IRS debt, you do not need to be formally served... but for stuff like credit card debt I sure think that you need to be served in person or through a representative. You should talk to an attorney in your area, since you might not have been served and just got a bad judgment (but they'll just likely reissue service and then get you, so you're not free of the debts).
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    MarieFrancis
    Can you tell me if a judgement can be filed without being personally served or notified that it is happening? I live in New York.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    Bill
    Find out the details of the judgment (get a credit report) and contact the entity that won the judgment against you. If you let them know what happened, they might still reach a payment agreement with you.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2009
    Chris
    I have a jugdement of $3000 that with interest is now $7000. When I was served court docs I had already moved from MI and NV. I now live in NC and received word a lawyer was filing a foreign judgement. I don't rememeber the debt, but I can't deny it. I am open to paying. What is the best way to proceed.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2009
    Bill
    You will need to follow up with the company that obtained the judgment against you, and ask them about the specifics of how they are going to deduct the future amounts. You will also need to go through the terms of the judgment to see how it specifies that your accounts be garnished. A lot will will depend on state laws, you can read more at http://www.bills.com/collection-laws/. You should also look at all three of your credit reports to see how this debt is being reported.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2009
    Pete
    I have an judgment against me for 13,000. One month ago a one time levy emptied my account for 4,000. I have not heard anything since that time. I know the judgment is good for 10 years....what do i do now?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    Bill
    That really depends on how the creditor wants to deal with it. Judgments can be enforced across the states.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    La-Tonia
    If the same creditor has several judgments against you over a period of time for a revolving account can they include all the judgments in one garnishment or do they have to file the garnishments seperately since they were for different judgments? Also are they allowed to garnish your wages through your employer if they are in a different state?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    Bill
    Once the judgment is paid off, the county clerk will enter a Satisfaction of Judgment in the court record. This will show that you have paid off the judgment. He will also contact your judgment creditor and inform about the payment done. Remember, you need to keep a watch on your credit report and see if it's updated. If it is not, then you will have to contact the creditor and ask them to update the status of the account. Once the creditor updates it, it should reflect on your credit report in 30-60 days.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    sherley
    Hi, How long does a creditor have to remove any lien off your bank account once you satisfied the judgement? I live in New York. Thanks!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    E.Davisson
    I live in CA. and owe both State and Federal taxes, is the 25% garnishment rule applicable in my state? How many garnishments can be active at a time? I have had a call form a debt relief firm telling me that the Feds or State can garnish my entire paycheck is this true? Thank you OED
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    Bill
    The IRS and government does live by a different set of rules, I believe. I'd recommend calling a tax resolution firm for your IRS Debts. Start out by calling Freedom Tax Relief and see what they can do for you to resolve the IRS debt problems.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    Bill
    You seem to have done your research. If you do not have assets such as a home, then the recourses available for credit card companies is pretty limited and varies from state to state. Keep in mind that a wage garnishment can only happen after the creditor successfully gets a judgment against you, and will depend on how many of your credit card companies will actually decide to sue you in court. You can also try the services of a debt settlement program. These programs will have you save a specific amount each month in a savings account and will negotiate lower lump sum settlements on all your accounts. A good company is Freedom Debt relief. You can get a free savings quote (based on your specific creditors) by calling 1-800-544-7211 or by visiting www.freedomdebtrelief.com. All the best.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2009
    RICH
    I HAVE OVER $70,000 IN UNSECURED CREDIT CARD DEBTS. I OWN NO REAL ESTATE, AND VERY LITTLE OF VALUE OTHERWISE. A BANKRUPTCY LAWYER TOLD ME THAT I WOULD BE PAYING $1400.00 A MONTH; THAT'S MORE THAN HALF MY NET INCOME! I'M THINKING WAGE GARNISHMENT AT 25% IS MUCH BETTER, SINCE IT WOULD ONLY TAKE $675.00, AND LEAVE ME WITH SOME MONEY AT LEAST!
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    Bill
    You should have clarified with the lender (when your bank account was garnished) as to whether they would report the debt to the bureaus as paid in full with a zero balance. They cannot collect on the same debt again. If you have the proof of payment, you should present it to them. Also, ask them for a debt validation letter. Meanwhile, you should check on your credit report to see if this account shows up and if it does, when was the last payment made. If a specific number of years have passed since the last payment, then you might not have to pay the debt based on the Statute of Limitations in your state (you can check for your state information).
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Dec, 2008
    Barbara
    My son went to the dentist in 1999, my ex said he paid the $265.00 bill as he was court ordered to do. In 2000 my bank accout was garnished in the amount of $700, 2 x debt + $75. for the banks bother, for payment of this dental bill. Now in 2008 they are trying to recollect on this same bill! In 2003 they tried it and I signed papers disputing the debt, this is the first I've heard from them since then....what are they up to and how do I fight it? Can they take my bank accoutn again for the same debt?! Now they are trying to collect over $400.00 on a debt that was originally $265.00!?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2008
    Sam
    Honestly, if a debtor files bankruptcy, even after you have obtained a judgment against the individual or company, it can become very difficult, if not impossible, for the judgment creditor (you) to enforce its judgment. Whether or not you will be able to recover any of your money will depend on what type of bankruptcy the debtors file. If they file a Chapter 7 liquidation bankruptcy, thier non-exempt assets will be sold by the bankruptcy trustee; if they have any assets to be sold, you may receive some money, but it is probably unlikely. If the debtors file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, in which the debtors would make payments to the courts to be distributed their creditors, you may receive payment for a portion of your judgment; it is relatively uncommon for non-priority creditors (which include most debts other than student loans, taxes, etc.) to receive the full balance they are owed. You may be able to challenge the dischargeability of the debt owed to you if you can show that the obligation was incurred fraudulenty, or possibly for other reasons. For example, if you prove that the debtors incurred this debt with no intention of repaying you, or if they lied about their ability to repay you, the court may rule that the debt is non-dischargeable, allowing you to enforce your judgment as allowed by your state lab, possibly including seizing assets, garnishing wages, etc. I strongly encourage you to consult with an attorney as soon as possible to discuss the options available to you to enforce the debt.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2008
    Theresa
    I sold a business, but the buyers never paid the $175,000. If I take them to arbitration and get a judgement against them, but they file bankruptcy in the meantime do I have any recourse to get my monies.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2008
    Bill
    Social Security income is always protected from garnishments. No credit card company can just take your money. They have to go through the process of litigation in court and successfully get a judgment against you. But, when in court, once the judge will always exclude fixed income from getting garnished. If you are being sued, you should get help from a qualified attorney as soon as possible.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Nov, 2008
    bill
    i am on social security and mt money goes into the bank can a gredit company take what my social security puts in the bank?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2008
    Bill
    The first thing that you should do is consult with an attorney in New York as soon as possible to discuss this situation and determine the best way to proceed in resolving the garnishments. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for consumers in New York have judgments entered against them without being properly served a summons and complaint. In order to determine why the court entered judgments against you on these credit card debts, you may want to visit NYC civil court which issued the judgment to obtain a copy of the case records; most importantly, you should request a copy of the "return of service" which should detail how the creditor claims you were served with the summons. Often, consumers will find that the summons was served at an unknown address or to a total stranger, which could make fighting the judgments easier. The NYC Civil Court's website, http://www.courts.state.ny.us/courts/nyc/civil/civil.shtml, lists the locations of the various court divisions in the City along with other information which you may find useful. You may be able to have these judgments set aside by the court due to the fact that you were not properly served with a summons and not given an opportunity to argue your case. Your attorney should be able to assist you in filing the appropriate motions with the court to begin this process; you need to take action as soon as possible because you probably have a limited amount of time in which to file your motions. Having the judgment set aside will not make the debt go away, but it would stop the garnishment and allow you an opportunity to defend yourself in court. It may also provide you with additional time to raise funds to try to negotiate settlement on these debts. In a worst case scenario, you may be able to file for bankruptcy protection to stop the garnishments and discharge these and any other unsecured debts you may owe. Your attorney should be able to tell you the best way to resolve these debts and if bankruptcy is a viable option for you and your family.
    1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2008
    Lee
    I have 2 garnishments from the Marshall's that are pending, I was never served court summons or received a certified notice but my employer has just received their notice. The garnishments are for unpaid credit cards, the actual limit on 1 card was $1200, judgment is for $4100, the other card limit was $350 , judgment is for $1500. I live in NYC what can I do to stop this? I have a baby, and I believe there will be more creditors on the way. Can I contact the credit card company & settle or is it too late? Should I file for bankruptcy? YThanks- your advice is greatly appreciated.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2008
    Bill
    They are just using scare tactics, if they proceed with a court case, you need to be notified in writing and summoned to court, where you can present your case and I am sure the Judge will take a look at your situation and insist on a payment plan. Meanwhile, you should look into a debt settlement program, to see if you qualify and how much they can reduce your debt, based on what you can afford.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Oct, 2008
    Tanza
    with the ecornomy being the way it is i am behind on alot of credit cards now they write me letters saying if i dont pay a certain amount that they our going to put a judgment against me i live in pa with 2 young children having it rough to make mortgage and electric bill what should i do they wont let me pay little by little
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2008
    Bill
    I'm sorry to hear about the financial strain these judgments cause you and your family. My first piece of advice would be to go speak with a qualified bankruptcy attorney in your area as soon as possible to discuss the options available to you in this situation. Generally speaking, a creditor who has a judgment against you can take whatever legal steps available to it to enforce the judgment, including wage garnishment, bank levies, liens on property, etc.; from your question it sounds like all of these are happening to you simultaneously, which is legal in most states. At your court hearing tomorrow, you may be able to convince the judge the actions the creditor is taking are causing undue hardship on your family; depending on your state's laws, he or she may be able to limit the creditor's enforcement action going forward and may be able to reduce the amount they are garnishing from your paycheck. However, the only definitive way I know to stop a creditor's enforcement action in a situation like yours would be to file for bankruptcy protection. I cannot tell you whether you should file for bankruptcy protection, or even if you qualify. If you would like to read more about bankruptcy, I invite you to visit the Bills.com Bankruptcy Resources page. Whatever action you are considering at this time, I strongly encourage you to consult with an attorney in your area to determine what options are available to help relieve the financial stress caused by these judgments so that you can use your money where it is most needed, on your family.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2008
    Tonya
    I currently have 4 judgements against me, I also am paying the one back by wage garnishment...The lawyers handling all 4 accounts have also put levies on my home and vechicle and put a bank freeze on funds from my bank account...I have gone to the court to oppose the levy's, I filled out an objection notice and I have a wage hearing tomorrow..would you consider this harassment, I mean there getting me from every angle...There already being paid maybe slowly but they get there money faithfully every week out of my paycheck...Is the judge the person who can lift the bank levy? I am a single mom who puts every penny I have in the bank to pay my bills and they come along and just take it, to were now I can't pay my house tax or mortgage.....Any advice Thankyou. Tonya
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Sep, 2009
    Paul
    I read two sides of the coin. I read that social securiy income and pension cannot be garnished by consumer credit and at the same time yes which is true?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2008
    Sam
    Once a debt collector is successful in getting a judgment in their favor, they can pursue to garnish your bank account if the state law allows it. This does not mean that they have to get another judgment in the current state that you reside in. If the state that you currently reside in allows garnishments of your bank accounts, then the debt collector will be able to pursue their collection efforts here as well. For more information on collection laws, please visit http://www.bills.com/collection-laws/.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2008
    Sam
    If a debt collector has a judgment issued against me in one state. If I open a bank account in another state, are they automatically entitled to seize assets from that bank account without a judgment obtained from that particular state?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2008
    Bill
    There is no need to panic, just speak with your bank to see what is wrong and tell them that you need access to your ATM card. For all you know its a minor issue such as the validity of the card having expired.
    1 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2008
    PRISCILLA
    my bank account closed my access to my atm card but my account is still open why is that and they show no restraints on my account that supposedly has a levy on it how can i find out if this is just a minor mistake i never received any letter saying i owed anybody and i checked my credit report from all three credit companies? please help i'am scared
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2008
    Bill
    Even if the judgment was issued against you, you can still talk to the company to make other payment arrangements so that your bank account is not garnished. You need to ask for a copy of the judgment to see what the terms of the repayment plan are. In case you are fine with the current arrangement, then there is nothing that you need to do, the payments will continue until the debt is paid off.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Jun, 2008
    Maria
    will it be possible if we can stop the levy of getting money to our bank account?The bank gave me the number to call the company responsible of taking out the money & was advised to call back on the 20th of June to make payment arrangment? If the judgement was made do we still need to make payment arrangement?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2008
    Bill
    I am guessing your question pertains to a judgment. I am not sure if the bank in New York can put a lien on your property in Texas, given that Texas has homestead protection if the property is your primary residence. On the other hand the bank may succeed in doing so if it can establish that the home in Texas is not your primary residence. Either way, doesn’t take my word for it; contact a qualified attorney to clarify the ramifications of your situation. The creditor can locate any monies you have in bank accounts and seize them. There are businesses that specialize in helping creditors and debt collection agencies locate all of your assets, including all of your bank accounts. If the creditor finds any money you have that is not exempt from seizure by your state's laws, it will use the judgment to levy your bank account.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2008
    Lois
    Can a Bank in New York State levy a lien against property I hold in Texas? Also can they put a restraining notice against a checking account in Texas?
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2008
    Yolanda
    I think I'm about to have a judgement placed against for an unpaid balance at a supply store I had an account with ,..I live in SC ,so I know they are not able to garnish my wages ,but my concern is will try to put a levy on my bank account ,I'm not sure how common levying a bank account is in SC
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Mar, 2008
    Bill
    I cannot say for sure as to how common, a bank levy is in SC, but you cannot rule out the possibility. The best place to ask would be your bank itself.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2008
    Bill
    If the judgment has already passed, there is little you can do to remove this bank lien. You can try to open a different account or deposit the stimulus check into your wife's account.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    Apr, 2008
    SEAN
    i had a judgement filed against myself by wolpoff & abramson for a unpaid cell phone bill from 6 years ago. the bill was unjust but i did not fight it. these people put a levy on my wifes' and i account. my wife opened a separate account under her name only. right now there is a hold on my account for approx. $2248.00, there is no money going in to this account, until our stimulus check is deposited in may. the funds would go directly to those people. my wife and i need this money, w&a's paralegal say tere is nothing they can work out. is there any way to get this hold off my bank account? thank-you for your advice.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2008
    Bill
    Looks like you are right (http://www.bcsalliance.com/debt1_southcarolina.html). Wages seem to be a 100% exempt.
    0 Votes

  • 35x35
    May, 2008
    REBECCA
    I was unaware that SC could not garnish wages. Is this true? My (small husband/wife owned) employer garnishs peoples wages on a regular basis. Is this legal?
    0 Votes