WHITTIER WAGE GARNISHMENT LAWYER
WHAT IS WAGE GARNISHMENT?
Wage garnishment is a court or government agency order that an individual’s employer may receive. The order forces an employer to withhold a part of an employee’s paycheck in order to repay creditors. Each state may have different wage garnishment laws and the rules vary according to the type of debt. California places limits on wage garnishing actions. The limits in the state of California are similar to the federal laws for wage garnishment. Generally, creditors will not be able to garnish more than 25% of a debtor’s wages. This law can change if the debtors wages are already low, the law may protect them further.
WHEN CAN MY WAGES BE GARNISHED IN CA?
Creditors cannot simply go to the employer and ask for them to garnish a debtor’s wages. This means that if you have fallen behind on your credit card payments, the creditor cannot just garnish your wages without a court order. Generally, the creditor will have to obtain a court judgment that states that the debtor owes them money. There are some exceptions to this rule and your wages can be garnished without an order from the court if your debts include:
- Defaulted student loans
- Unpaid income taxes
- Child support in a court order
- Child support arrears
For these types of debts, creditors may skip the step of obtaining a court judgment. If you are unsure whether your creditor is looking to garnish your wages or are suffering from this act already, contact a Whittier bankruptcy lawyer from Goldbach Law Group.
CALIFORNIA’S WAGE GARNISHMENT LIMITS
In order to protect the debtor from complete wage garnishment, states place limits on this action. California laws aim to ensure that the debtor will still be able to pay for their living expenses after the garnishment. While states can stray from the federal limits and make stricter limits, California sticks with using the federal law limits. The rules followed in this state are:
- In one week, creditors can garnish the lesser of:
- 25% of disposable earnings (wages after tax reduction)
- The amount left over after your wages have exceeded the state hourly minimum wage by 40 times
These regulations may seem confusing, here is an example. If you make $1,000 each week, but after tax reductions you only earn $700, this means that 25% of $700 can be garnished ($175). Or using the other formula, if minimum wage is $8.00, you would multiply that by 40, and the remainder of your income could be garnished ($380). Whichever amount is less would be the amount garnished for the creditor. So the state would allow a wage garnishment of $175 each week.
SPECIAL WAGE GARNISHMENT SITUATIONS
As mentioned before, debts such as child support, student loans and unpaid taxes have different rules than other debts. For child support debts, 50% of our disposable income can be garnished to pay your child support. If you have defaulted on student loans, the Department of Education can garnish 15% of your disposable earnings as long as it is not more than 30 times the minimum wage for your state. Lastly, if you have unpaid taxes, the federal government can garnish your wages. The amount depends on if you have dependents and also your deduction rate. In California, if you have unpaid state taxes, the state can garnish 25% of your net wages.
SUFFERING FROM WAGE GARNISHMENT IN RIVERSIDE, CA?
If your employer is withholding part of your wages to repay creditors, consult with a Whittier wage garnishment attorney right away. Do not hesitate to contact Goldbach Law Group today and see how we can help you. We may be able to fight against the wage garnishment or come up with an alternative.