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Will my wage garnishment stop if I file for bankruptcy?

On Behalf of | Nov 3, 2016 | Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

When money is tight in North Carolina, it can be difficult if you are forced to live paycheck to paycheck. If someone is garnishing your wages and deducting money from your hard-earned paycheck, it can be even harder. Dealing with a lot debt and financial stressors such as wage garnishments are what lead many people on the path to filing for bankruptcy. However, the purpose of bankruptcy is to provide you with some relief and that includes ceasing the garnishment of your wages.

Thanks to something known as the automatic stay, any of your wages that are being garnished should stop being so once you have filed your petition for bankruptcy, according to The Nest. In addition, if a judgment has been issued against you but wage garnishment has not yet commenced, the creditor will be unable to initiate it once the automatic stay begins.

An exception to this rule does exist in the case of child support. If you are having your wages garnished as part of a child support order, filing for bankruptcy will not put a stop to that obligation and money will continue to come out of your paycheck for that purpose.

Any garnishments that were taken before you filed for bankruptcy will not be returned to you. However, once your creditors are notified, they must cease the wage garnishment from that time going forward. This is why it is crucial that both your creditors and your employer be given notice of your bankruptcy petition immediately. This is not intended as legal advice and is provided as general information on this topic.


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