A client from Winnetka recently asked us about Wage Garnishement. If you’re in debt, and are having your wages garnished, you can stop creditors from diminishing your take home pay by filing for bankruptcy. During the bankruptcy process, creditors are no longer able to collect money from you, which includes money taken from your wages.
Wage garnishment begins with creditors suing you in court in order to get a money judgment. This only applies to certain kinds of debt, such as credit cards, loans, or other similar unsecured debts. Student loans, back-taxes, and child support debts can be collected through wage garnishment without any legal suit being filed. If the court rules in the creditor’s favor, then they can request wage garnishment in order to secure their payment. A court order is then sent to the local sheriff’s office, which then notifies your employer. A percentage of your wages are withheld from your check each pay period, and those funds are sent to the creditor.
Filing for bankruptcy can stop your wages from being garnished any further. During the filing process, you will provide the court with a list of your creditors to whom you owe money. Then, either the court will notify the creditors of your bankruptcy filing, or you can do so on your own. Handing the notifications may be quicker, but will require more work on your part. Once notified, the creditors are then no longer able to actively collect payments for your debts.
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It’s in your best interest to file for bankruptcy before wage garnishment begins. Any garnishments that take place after you file, but before the creditors are notified can be refunded, but it may take quite a while for that to happen. That’s why notifying the creditors yourself may be in your best interest, rather than relying on the slow-moving legal system to do it for you. It’s also a good idea to proactive in these situations, rather than reactive. Stop creditors from garnishing your wages before they even start.
If you have debt that you aren’t able to control, please read our FAQs on how a wage garnishment lawyer in Los Angeles can handle your case . If you’re thinking about filing for bankruptcy, or if you have any questions about your situation, and how we can help you, please contact us today. Our trained legal professionals understand that no two bankruptcies are the same, and the details of your case matter. Together we can help you protect your assets and navigate the complicated California bankruptcy process.
If you are thinking of filing bankruptcy in Southern California please contact us today.
We accept Bankruptcy cases in these counties: Los Angeles County, San Fernando Valley, Orange County, San Bernardino County, Riverside County, Ventura County and Santa Barbara County.
Elena Steers is a highly experienced bankruptcy attorney, the founder of Law Offices of Steers & Associates, and previously worked as a Bankruptcy Trustee Assistant at the Office of the Chapter 13 Trustee in Los Angeles. Her current affiliations include the State Bar of California, National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, and Central District Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys Association.