Note: This is not legal advice, but instead practical information that applies to the majority of cases. Please do not rely upon this information without a consultation with a qualified attorney. Prepared By Chris Rampley, Attorney at Law

How does this Creditor Expect me to Live if they Take 25% of My Pay?

 

The Short Answer;  They do not care!  A garnishing creditor does not care if you can afford to eat, pay your rent, pay your car payment, or even feed the kids!  They dont care f you get evicted or lose your car.  

 

What can I do?

Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy is the answer.  The moment your case is filed and the creditor is given notice they must immedaitely take steps to STOPthe ganishmnt or they cna e fined by the bankryotcy court. 

Bankruptcy is meant to provide stability, security and peace of mind.

 

Are there other alternatives to filing Bankruptcy that will stop a Garnishment?

Yes, but they are few and usually not very attractive.  Here are your other options;

(1) Settle for a lump sum.   (You usually have to come up with a lump sum of at least 50% of the debt...and then you get a 1099 (yep, a tax bill) for any part of the debt that is forgiven.

(2) Work out payments - The creditor has usually offered this before garnishing and will usually no longer accept this as an option once the garnishment begins.

(3) File a "Traverse" - A traverse is a direct court challenge to the garnishment. The bad news is that garnishment continues uninterrupted until the traverse is decided in your favor. In order to win a traverse you have to show that the garnishment "is untrue or legally insufficient" to be successful.  Most people think that a traverse lets you fight the lawsuit all over again, but that is not true. A traverse only challenges the garnishment, not whether or not the money is owed in the first place.   In my experience 99% of garnishments would not be stopped by a traverse and it is a waste of time to try one in most cases.  

Are there other alternatives to filing Bankruptcy that will stop a Garnishment?

 

Yes, but they are few and usually not very attractive.  Here are your other options;

(1) Settle for a lump sum.   (You usually have to come up with a lump sum of at least 50% of the debt...and then you get a 1099 (yep, a tax bill) for any part of the debt that is forgiven.

(2) Work out payments - The creditor has usually offered this before garnishing and will usually no longer accept this as an option once the garnishment begins.

(3) File a "Traverse" - A traverse is a direct court challenge to the garnishment. The bad news is that garnishment continues uninterrupted until the traverse is decided in your favor. In order to win a traverse you have to show that the garnishment "is untrue or legally insufficient" to be successful.  Most people think that a traverse lets you fight the lawsuit all over again, but that is not true. A traverse only challenges the garnishment, not whether or not the money is owed in the first place.   In my experience 99% of garnishments would not be stopped by a traverse and it is a waste of time to try one in most cases.  

How much can they take? 

 

25% of all of your pay, after taxes are deducted. Then 

I have actually had clients that received Negative Paychecks due to garnishments!

Can I be fired for a Garnishment?

YES!  Georgia law allows you to be fired if you get more than one garnishment!

I just got served lawsuit papers, how long do i have until I am garnished?

Usually about 6 weeks.  You can extend that time by filing an answer to the lawsuit and fighting the case in court. 

However, if you legitimately owe the debt and the statute of limitations has not run then fighting the case will stall but not stop the lawsuit.

I just received a notice of Garnishment - how long do i have before the money comes out of my check?

Your employer has to start honoring the garnishment and submit money to the court within 45 days,