What To Expect at A Wage Garnishment Hearing


Knowing What to Expect Can Help You Prepare

No one relishes the thought of having their wages garnished for any reason. It is hard enough to get by in today’s economy without the stress of an even smaller paycheck due to garnished wages. At the same time, you do have recourse by filing for a hearing. A judge will evaluate your circumstances and either uphold the court order or levy, or he or she will overturn it based on inability to pay.

Steps To Take

In order to secure an exemption, you’ll need file a written petition for a hearing date. You’ll need to include the following details:

  • Your case number
  • You full legal name
  • Your formal petition requesting reduction or elimination of the garnishment
  • Exemption calculations

Once you file your written request with the court clerk, you’ll receive a notice stating whether or not your petition was granted, and if so, your hearing date. It is essential for you appear on the day and time assigned to you.

What You’ll Need to Bring

  • Proof of dependents and your exemptions
  • Paystubs
  • Receipts for any payments you may have already made
  • Proof of bankruptcy filing if your attorney has not yet notified the court of bankruptcy proceedings

At this stage, you must show the presiding judge you are filing for an exemption based on inability to pay, or if you are requesting a lesser garnishment from each paycheck. The judge will consider the following factors when evaluating your case:

  • Whether or not you have filed for bankruptcy
  • You have already paid the debt in full
  • Whether or  not you provide 50 percent of the support of any dependents in your household
  • Whether or not you are the primary earner and head of household
  • You have an existing payment agreement established with the creditor or tax agency, and that agreement is in good standing

If the judge rules in your favor, your garnishment can either be eliminated altogether or reduced to less than the customary 25 percent of your pay. If the judge rules against you, the wage garnishment will move forward as ordered.

If you are facing a garnishment hearing, it will be in your best interest to have legal representation. A qualified tax attorney will be able to assist you with tax-related wage garnishments or levies. Your attorney will see to it that you fully understand your rights, and will ensure your rights are upheld.

If you are facing a tax-related wage levy or garnishment, we have tax attorneys on staff to assist you. Get started today by either clicking on the white “start chat” button at the top of any of our webpages, or by giving us a call. Don’t go it alone. We can help.


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