Bankruptcy's Automatic Stay Can Keeps Creditors from Your Paycheck
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When you're having trouble paying your bills, the last thing you want is less money to take home at the end of the day. But the courts allow your creditors to do just that, through wage garnishment.
Whether you're behind on credit card payments, medical bills, or even child support, your creditors can garnish part of your wages to get the money that is rightfully theirs.
Depending on the type of debt you have, you may be able to stop garnishment and other tactics creditors use by filing personal bankruptcy.
Whether your wages are currently being garnished or you're afraid your creditors may begin garnishment, you can discuss your financial situation with a local bankruptcy attorney. Simply fill out the free case evaluation form below or call toll-free 877-833-2410 to connect with an attorney today.
How Creditors Garnish Wages
Generally, wage garnishment begins with a judgment against the debtor.
If you have stopped paying or become past-due on a debt, your creditors may file a lawsuit against you. The outcome, called a judgment, states how much is owed on the debt, including penalties and interest.
The courts will typically allow the debtor a certain period of time to pay the judgment. However, if this period passes, the order for wage garnishment will be made and executed, typically by a deputy or other officer of the law.
Your employer will receive the order to garnish your wages, with the money taken directly from your pay and sent to the courts. The courts allow up to 25% of a debtor's pay to be garnished for most debts, although child support and alimony may be garnished at a higher rate.
Multiple creditors are able to garnish a single person's wages, often leaving the individual with only a portion of his or her earnings.
Protecting Your Money
Through filing bankruptcy, many debtors are able to stop wage garnishment. Bankruptcy provides debt relief through the automatic stay, a court order that halts creditors.
Bankruptcy stops garnishment, often immediately, once the petition is filed. At the end of the bankruptcy process, the debtor receives a debt discharge, putting an end to any obligation to repay the debt.
In a chapter 13 bankruptcy, the debtor must repay a portion of the original debt, depending on their income and expenses. In a chapter 7 bankruptcy, the debtor may have to liquidate some assets.
Discuss Wage Garnishment with a Local Bankruptcy Lawyer
Whether you've recently fallen behind on bills or have been watching your wages get garnished for months, you may still have time to act.
A local bankruptcy attorney can explain garnishment laws in your state, and how you can use bankruptcy to your advantage.
Simply fill out our free case evaluation form or call 877-833-2410 to connect with a local bankruptcy attorney today.