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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    19

    Default Wage Garnishment

    My question involves collection proceedings in the State of: Tennessee

    Hello. I have a medical bill that I was sued for, a judgement was placed against me, and now the company has garnished my wages.

    This garnishment was entered Sep 3. I did not get an E-mail from my employer about it until Sept 23. I went to the court house on Wednesday and filed several pieces of paperwork to protect my property, and ask the court to allow me to make payments as this garnishment is going to make it impossible for me to pay bills, buy food, etc. A court date was set for this coming Thursday.

    The problem here is that my work processes our pay usually on Tuesdays and the garnishment is set to begin on Oct 4. That is my next pay day and I am paid bi-weekly on Fridays, although they process on the Tuesday before the Friday. So I am almost certain this next pay day will have a good chunk of my pay taken.

    Now my question is if the judge agrees to allow me to make these payments but they had already taken out a huge amount, will that amount be given back to me, minus the payment arrangement amount that was accepted? Also was the creditor supposed to contact me with notice of this garnishment? I am upset that I did not receive it in time to act fast enough to stop this garnishment. The notice came from my employer twenty days after it was ordered.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    19,246

    Default Re: Wage Garnishment

    The employer is not obliged to give you any notification.

    What makes you think the courts are going to look favorably on your request. You were supposed to contest this earlier. The amounts are set by statute and the judge isn't going to change that just because you don't like it.

    Tennessee only has very limited property exclusions. When you have judgments against you "protecting property" is not something the courts are going to allow you. You're expected to use your assets to pay your debts.

    There is a process called the "slow pay" in your state if you HAVE no assets that aren't exempt (and even a home has very minimal equity protection). Is this what you are attempting?

    And no, you're not getting money back that's already been collected by the creditor unless you can show it was somehow improperly obtained (nothing you've said indicates this).

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    19

    Default Re: Wage Garnishment

    I never said the employer was obliged to give notification. I stated that they gave me the notification and when they did. I would think that the creditor should bear the responsibility of giving the notification and in a timely manner so I would have enough time to respond.

    I think the court will see my income and situation and allow payments. It is not just because "I don't like it". We are a family of four which includes two very small children and I am the only income earner. We also get public assistance and live paycheck to paycheck. Not everyone who is in debt doesn't pay bills because they want to. In fact this medical bill was initially covered under my wife's previous health insurance policy until she lost her job during maternity leave and they retro-dated to end the insurance which then made me liable for my ER visit.

    Slow pay is what I am requesting. And yes, I do have property exemptions...in TN we have a $10K wild card which is protecting what little assets we do have (like our car).

    All I know is that if the creditor fights this and/or the judge doesn't agree to my reasonable payment request, I will then just file bankruptcy. Hey, they are not the only company I owe. A lot of crap happened when my wife lost her job and our credit is shot. So there is no way but up from here! Can't fall off the floor...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    19,246

    Default Re: Wage Garnishment

    Well, good luck. However, you should have made the slow pay motion earlier. Slowpay indeed will allow a lower payment than garnishment. On a straight garnishment, the judgment creditor is entitled to the statutory max (25% etc...). Note that slowpay isn't a "right" but something the judge may (and likely will) allow. Note that you need to be careful. If you don't meet the slowpay payments, the garnishment can go back and you can't get another slowpay.

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