What is a wage garnishment? It is an order from a court or government agency that is sent to your employer. It requires your employer to withhold a certain percentage of money from your paycheck and then send the money to your creditor to be applied to the debt you owe that creditor. For debts like credit cards, medical bills, etc. you must first be sued in the court system by your creditor and a Judge must enter a legal judgment against you for the amount of the debt. Once your creditor has a judgment, the creditor can start a garnishment on your paycheck. Government agencies that you owe for taxes and student loans and for debts arising from spousal and child support can start a garnishment without suing you.
Stopping a wage garnishment on your paycheck begins with a review of the source of the debt that gives rise to the wage garnishment. Wage garnishments may be ordered to recover money for a creditor who sued you for a past due debt such as credit card, medical bills, etc. It can also be ordered to recover child support, spousal support(maintenance), Federal or State tax debts, and student loan debt.
Filing bankruptcy can stop wage garnishments for civil judgment debts such as credit cards, medical bills, past due rent, etc. The garnishment cannot stop until you file bankruptcy. However, wage garnishments for tax debts, student loans, and child or spousal support cannot be stopped by bankruptcy.