Wage Garnishment and Bankruptcy
Wage Garnishment in Ohio
Wage Garnishments are often the final straw which forces an individual to seek Bankruptcy Protection. When you are already struggling with financial problems, having a large portion of your wages taken by a creditor just make things go from bad to worse. In Ohio, Creditors can garnish unto 25% of your disposable wages in accordance with the Ohio Revised Code. However, certain debts, such as those for child support and taxes can exceed the 25% limit.
The Wage Garnishment Process
For most debts, the creditor must first file a lawsuit against you and obtain a judgment before they can garnish your wages. This is not so in the case of Federal Student Loans, Taxes and Child Support. In those cases, a wage garnishment is usually an administrative procedure that is accomplished without a hearing. The creditor simply sends a notice to your employer and the garnishment begins. You can usually contest the garnishment by requesting a hearing but the garnishment will continue until a Court or Administrative Agency orders the garnishment to be terminated.
The Lawsuit Process
If you have received a Summons and Complaint filed against you in a Court by a Creditor, you must file an Answer within 28 days in Ohio or the Creditor will receive a Judgment by Default against you. Once the Judgment is granted, the Creditor can execute on the Judgment which includes the right to Garnish your Wages.
Bankruptcy and the Automatic Stay
When you are served with a Summons, you need to speak to a Bankruptcy Attorney immediately so you can file a Bankruptcy Petition and stop any civil execution against your property. Once a Bankruptcy Petition is filed, the Automatic Stay prevents a creditor from continuing to prosecute a civil lawsuit and terminates any Garnishment Orders which may be in effect. However, the Automatic Stay does not apply to certain actions such as those involving Child Support.
If you have received a Summons in a Civil Lawsuit or have a pending or active Wage Garnishment, call me now at (513) 528-0200 or send an email by following this link. We can stop the Lawsuit and the Garnishment and help get you back on your feet.
I look forward to helping you,