In North Carolina, wage garnishment is strictly limited. The instances in which your wages can be garnished are primarily: federal student loan debt, alimony, child support, taxes, overpayment of unemployment benefits, and ambulance services. A Charlotte bankruptcy lawyer can guide you through the rules and help you determine your rights.
Limitations On Wage Garnishment Amounts
Wage garnishment in North Carolina is not permitted at all if your disposable income is less than 30 times the federal minimum wage. If the wage garnishment relates to a debt owed to the North Carolina Department of Revenue, the applicable threshold is 10% of your gross wages.
While wage garnishment in North Carolina is limited, it may not prevent an out-of-state creditor from garnishing your North Carolina wages if it obtains an order in another state. Regardless, even an out-of-state creditor is limited to the wage garnishment limits set by federal law.
An employer is not in violation of the law if it recognizes an out-of-state wage garnishment; this does not mean you cannot hire an attorney to fight it. Additionally, federal law protects your job in the event of a wage garnishment—your employer cannot fire you based on the hassle involved with a wage garnishment.
For Wage Garnishment In Effect Today
Filing a bankruptcy will ‘freeze’ wage garnishment during the time the bankruptcy is active. This is because of the federal law providing for an automatic stay. The automatic stay is the equivalent of freezing all collector activity until the bankruptcy trustee makes a determination as to your bankruptcy case. For debts which are discharged in your bankruptcy, the garnishment will no longer be an issue as the debt will be discharged. While tax garnishments are sometimes an exception to this rule, they most commonly stop while the bankruptcy is active.
Bank Account Levy/Garnishment
Bank account garnishments are different from wage garnishments. Judgment creditors can seek to enforce their judgment through bank garnishments; however, prior to doing so, you are given a chance to protect property by filing the appropriate form with the court. If you believe a judgment creditor is attempting to collect on the judgment by taking your property, reach out to a Charlotte bankruptcy attorney today for advice on how to respond.
Call A Charlotte Bankruptcy Attorney Today
If you have questions about wage garnishment or bankruptcy, I am happy to provide you with guidance. The phone call is free. Please call 704.749.7747 to get answers today. Or, fill in this quick form requesting that the law firm contact you.