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Wage garnishment is a means of collecting money from an individual by withholding some portion of his or her earnings in order to pay a debt. Unfortunately, many consumers who are struggling with debt are simply unable to part with their hard-earned pay. Here is what you need to know about wage garnishment, consumer protection laws, and when to contact an attorney.

What is Wage Garnishment?

A wage garnishment is an enforced collection action that usually proceeds by a court order. The process works by requiring your employer to withhold part of each paycheck to make payments toward a debt. While the federal government limits the amount of an employee’s earnings that can be garnished and protects employees from losing their jobs, the amount collected varies greatly. Unfortunately, if you are already in debt, you most likely cannot afford to lose very much of your paychecks.

Who Can Order Wage Garnishment?

Wage garnishment may be ordered if your creditors win a court order requiring you to begin paying off your debts immediately. Wage garnishment may also be ordered by the IRS for consumers who have unpaid tax debt, and this government agency typically seizes as much money as they can from your paycheck to meet your original tax liability and any additional calculated interest or payments. Individuals who are significantly behind on child support payments may also face wage garnishment.

How Can I Stop the Process?

If you are overwhelmed by your financial burdens, filing for bankruptcy puts an immediate end to any wage garnishment proceedings and allows the consumer time to reorganize her debts with Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

If you are struggling with debt and facing wage garnishments, contact a bankruptcy lawyer today to find out if filing for Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 protection may be right for you. If you live in Schaumburg, Hoffman Estates, Chicago, Elgin, or McHenry, visit us online or call Cutler & Associates, Ltd. kruptcy lawyer