Can a credit card company legally garnish my wages?

Question

Can a credit card company legally garnish my wages?

Answer

If you have outstanding debt that you haven’t made a payment on for a significant amount of time, there are legal actions that any creditor, including credit card companies, can take in order to recover the amount of debt you owe, up to and including the legal garnishment of your wages. However, the process by which a credit card company must obtain and enforce a wage garnishment through your employer is not as easy as simply filing for a wage garnishment due to outstanding credit card debt.  Instead, there are specific rules for garnished wages credit card companies must abide by.

  • In order for a credit card company to legally place an enforceable wage garnishment order on you, the company first has to file a lawsuit against you in order to attempt to recover the debt you owe
  • The company must win the lawsuit, and 
  • The company must then request to the judge that a garnishment order be placed on your wages to satisfy the judgment against you that they won in the lawsuit. 

In order to file a legitimate lawsuit against you, the credit card company must prove to the court that you owe the debt and that you have made no effort to resolve the amount of debt that you owe. If you find yourself dealing with such a lawsuit, or dealing with any type of wage garnishment, you should consult with an experienced attorney to find out exactly what your options are for dealing with the situation.

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