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Wage Garnishment and Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

How to Stop Wage Garnishment Immediately

If you fall behind on payments to a creditor, that creditor has two choices: They can get a court order and take what you owe them out of your paycheck, or they can do the same by winning a civil suit against you. This is called wage garnishment or wage attachment. The only time creditors don’t need a court judgment to garnish your wages is in the case of unpaid income taxes, court ordered child support, child support in arrears, or defaulted student loans.

Wage garnishment may be good for your creditors, but it’s particularly bad for you: not only are you already having difficulty paying your bills, but now you have less money to pay them with. Fortunately, the state of California has limits for how much a creditor can take out of your weekly earnings after taxes and deductions. Creditors are allowed to garnish 25 percent of your disposable wages, or the amount by which your disposable weekly wages exceed 40 times California’s minimum hourly wage. In other words, a creditor can force you to work for minimum wage. Also, different types of debt have different percentage limits they can garnish. For instance, in a case of unpaid child or spousal support, up to 65 percent of your earnings are vulnerable to garnishment.

Can Bankruptcy Stop Wage Garnishment?

The easiest way to keep the money you work so hard for in your own pocket is to file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. When you file for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy, an automatic stay is issued. An automatic stay stops the garnishment of your wages, immediately, while your bankruptcy is pending. If your bankruptcy is successful, your debt will be erased. If your bankruptcy isn’t successful, your wage garnishment will be resumed. Keep in mind that automatic stay will not stop garnishment for unpaid child support and Chapter 7 Bankruptcy will not erase it.

File for Chapter 7 with a Bankruptcy Lawyer

As you can see, Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is a powerful tool for getting you completely, or mostly, out of debt. But filing for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy is a complicated process. To make sure your filing is legal and successful, you’ll want to leave it in the hands of an experienced bankruptcy attorney. The legal team at Nader & Berneman has been helping residents of the San Fernando Valley get out of debt for 20 years. Let us put our experience behind your claim so you can get a fresh start. Call (800) 568-0707 today for a free consultation with a San Fernando Valley bankruptcy lawyer.

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