5 Ways a Wage Garnishment Lawyer Can Help You
If you've had your wages garnished you know how frustrating and stressful it can be. Not only do you have to worry about making ends meet, but you also have to deal with the added stress of a wage garnishment order.
Fortunately, there are a number of ways an attorney can provide legal help. In this blog, we’ll discuss five of them.
What is Wage Garnishment?
Wage garnishment is a legal process that allows your creditors to collect a portion of your paycheck directly from your employer. For a creditor to garnish your wages, they typically must first get a court order. Once the court order is obtained, your employer will be required to withhold a certain amount of your wages from each paycheck until the debt is paid in full.
The amount of wages that can be withheld will vary depending on the state in which you live. For example, in some states, creditors are only allowed to garnish up to 15% of your disposable income, while in others, they may be able to garnish up to 25%. There are also different rules in place for different types of debt.
If you are facing a wage garnishment order, it is crucial to speak with a lawyer who can help you understand your debt relief options.
5 Ways a Lawyer Can Help You Stop Wage Garnishment
If you are struggling to make ends meet, the last thing you need is to have your wages garnished. Unfortunately, this is a common debt collection tactic, and it can be difficult to stop once it starts. However, an experienced lawyer can assist.
Here are five ways a lawyer can help you stop wage garnishment.
Challenge the Garnishment
In some situations, it may be possible to challenge the order on certain grounds. For instance, if you believe that the debt does not belong to you or that the amount stated in the order is incorrect, a lawyer can help you contest its validity in court.
However, if the order is legally valid, you can’t challenge it just because you can’t afford to pay it, even with the help of a lawyer.
Reduce the Withholding Amount
State and federal set limits on the amount of money a creditor can take from your earnings. This threshold is generally based on how much money you earn. If the wage garnishment exceeds this boundary, a lawyer can help you reduce the withholding amount from each paycheck. However, this will typically not stop the process entirely.
Request an Exemption
An attorney can help you argue that your income is exempt from the order. For instance, income that comes from Social Security, disability, retirement, alimony, and child support are exempt, so you may be able to avoid garnishment altogether. Similarly, if your wages are already being garnished for another debt, you may be able to reduce the amount taken from each paycheck.
Negotiate With Your Creditors
In some cases, creditors are willing to work out a payment plan or accept a lump-sum payment to avoid going through the hassle of garnishing your paycheck. A lawyer can help you negotiate with the creditor to try to reach an agreement that works for both sides.
However, remember that your creditors are under no obligation to work with you, and they often refuse to negotiate for this reason.
File For Bankruptcy
While there are other methods for dealing with a garnishment order, the fastest and most effective way to stop wage garnishment is filing for bankruptcy.
Filing for bankruptcy will immediately stop your creditors from garnishing your paycheck. However, the bankruptcy process can be complex, and it is essential to understand all of your options before taking this step. A lawyer can help you determine if bankruptcy is right for you and guide you every step of the way if you decide to proceed.
If your wages are being garnished, stop trying to handle it on your own. Request a free consultation with one of the experienced debt relief attorneys at DebtStoppers. Contact us today to learn how we can help you stop wage garnishment and get back on track financially.