October 24, 2016
Garnishments on Your Credit Report – 4 Ways to Resolve Them
Ignoring your contractual debt obligations can have a very serious impact on your financial status. Garnishment, a creditor’s last-chance attempt at debt collection, hits debt holders where it hurts; their ability to fill the gas tank, pay the bills, and feed their families. It is something that you should try to avoid at all costs.
When facing debt that can’t really be paid, the best plan of action is to act early and speak to your creditors to see if you can negotiate a payment plan or achieve some sort of payment arrangement. If debt goes unpaid and overlooked, the court may interfere by issuing a judgment requiring your employer to “garnish” or withhold a bit of your wages or financial balances to pay back the debt.
The road to wage garnishment can be long and winding. Here are four things you can do to deal with wage garnishment on your credit report:
- Stay in touch with your creditor: Wage garnishment is typically a final effort by creditors to squeeze some cash out of you when they cannot seem to get you to pay your debt with a certain time frame. If you ignore them or refuse to talk to them, you put yourself in a weaker position. Try your level best to stay in contact with the creditor and work on building up a reasonable payment plan. Showing the creditor you have every motive of paying back your debt may urge them to back off for now. A creditor is much more willing to work directly with a consumer to avoid court and attorney’s costs associated with obtaining a judgement and ultimately a wage garnishment.
- File an appeal: If the wage garnishment gets approved by the court, you have all the rights to file a “claim of exemption” which shows that you cannot avail this type of pay cut as your paycheck covers all your basic living costs, including insurance, grocery bill and housing. You will need to show to the court that you would basically get behind on your consistent bills if your wages were garnished. If the court gets convinced that the garnishment will worsen your financial condition even more, they may prevent the creditor from garnishing your wages or ask the creditor to reduce the amount that is to be garnished.
- Pay the judgment amount: If you do have some funds available to pay off the full debt within ten days of the judgment, the court can put a stop on the garnishment process altogether. Before that, make sure you are aware of the judgment amount and pay it off in full as soon as you can.
Summary: Resolving Garnishments on Your Credit Report
Being aggressive when creditors are coming after you can help prevent this drastic step altogether. Try your best to work out a repayment deal with your creditors so that they stay confident that you will pay the debt within a particular time frame. This is the best way to keep creditors off your back and stop garnishments on your credit report.