The bankruptcy attorneys at Groce & DeArmon, P.C., handle everything related to a bankruptcy case, including wage garnishments. In today’s blog, we talk about administrative wage garnishment in Missouri.
Wage Garnishment Versus Administrative Wage Garnishment
By definition, wage garnishment happens after a court order by which an employer withholds a person’s earnings to pay a debt. Familiar sources of wage garnishment include child support and consumer debts.
Administrative wage garnishment is a federal order that withholds at least 15% of earnings to pay a delinquent debt. State laws and provisions do not apply to this ruling. Also, administrative wage garnishment does NOT need a court order for this type of debt repayment to happen.
Policies and procedures of wage garnishment in Missouri include:
- Disposable income deductions may not exceed 15% of net pay. Higher percentages are deductible through the written consent of the debtor.
- The individual is allowed to inspect and copy records relating to the debt.
- An employer may not terminate, refuse employment, or take disciplinary action against the person involved in the administrative wage garnishment. These events are subject to a court of law, in which the person may sue any employer attempting unlawful acts.
- The debtor may enter into a written agreement with the garnishment agency under the agency’s terms to establish a repayment schedule.
- The debtor will have a hearing on the determination of the garnishment agency concerning the amount of debt.
What Agencies Employ an Administrative Wage Garnishment?
Any federal agency can order an employer to undertake an administrative wage garnishment. These agencies include the Internal Revenue Service (for taxes owed) and the Department of Education (for student loans).
At Groce & DeArmon, we specialize in more than bankruptcy. We have the experts and resources available to you to handle any administrative wage garnishment claims in Missouri. Our knowledgeable staff is here with you every step of the way. Speak to our office professionals about your options.
Employer Withholding Instructions
Under federal law, employers in Missouri must comply with wage garnishment in Missouri. Any refusal is subject to a court of law and punishable by imprisonment.
The steps of employment wage garnishment include:
- Ensuring the debtor’s information is correct regarding name, Social Security, address, and fill out the Employer Acknowledgement of Wage withholding form in its entirety.
- Calculate and deduct the wage garnishment for each pay period.
- Submit the amount to the federal agency address provided, double-checking the individual’s information is correct, indicating that you are submitting a wage withholding payment.
- The employer will continue to submit wage garnishment payments until instructed otherwise with an official release form.
Administrative Wage Garnishment Process
All federal agencies must follow specific procedures under an administrative wage garnishment.
State law. An administrative wage garnishment may happen regardless of what state laws say about garnishments, meaning an administrative wage garnishment from a federal agency supersedes state law.
Notice. You will receive a notice 30 days before the garnishment will start. Notice is sent to the last-known address known to the federal agency.
Repayment agreement. Before wage garnishment begins, you have the right to enter into a repayment agreement.
Lack of employment. If you are no longer employed due to being involuntarily separated from your previous job, an agency cannot file an administrative wage garnishment. Administrative wage garnishments cannot happen if you have been at your job for less than 12 months.
Automatic stay. If you file for bankruptcy, it automatically stops administrative wage garnishments. Although you cannot discharge some debts, like those for income taxes and student loans, filing for bankruptcy will STOP the wage garnishment until the trustee finalizes your case.
Speak to a Groce & DeArmon Attorney About Your Wage Garnishment in Missouri
If you are a resident in Springfield, Missouri, struggling from wage garnishments, including an administrative wage garnishment, the legal team at Groce & DeArmon, P.C., is here to help. By law, filing for bankruptcy can stop wage garnishment. Let our experts tell you more.
With over 15 years of experience, our attorneys have handled hundreds of claims in foreclosure, bankruptcy, and repossession. We have a positive track record of successful testimonials and offer affordable rates for individuals or families going through hardships. Get in touch with a firm that cares and may help prevent your wage garnishment from escalating into foreclosure or repossession.