Garnishing wages in New York

If you are a creditor in New York and have obtained a judgment against a debtor for an unpaid debt, one option for collecting the debt is to garnish the debtor’s wages. Here’s a step-by-step guide to garnishing wages in New York:

Obtain a judgment: The first step in garnishing wages in New York is to obtain a judgment against the debtor. This typically involves filing a complaint and serving the debtor with a summons and complaint, as described in the previous section. If the debtor does not respond, the creditor may be able to obtain a default judgment. If the debtor does respond and disputes the debt, the creditor will need to prove their case in court and obtain a judgment in their favor.

Serve the debtor with a wage garnishment order: Once the creditor has obtained a judgment, they can request that the court issue a wage garnishment order. This order requires the debtor’s employer to deduct a certain amount of money from the debtor’s wages each pay period and send it to the creditor. The creditor must serve the debtor with a copy of the wage garnishment order, as well as a notice of the right to claim exemptions.

Claim exemptions: The debtor has the right to claim exemptions from the wage garnishment. This means that they can request that certain amounts of their wages be exempt from garnishment. For example, the debtor may be able to claim an exemption for the amount of money needed to support themselves and their family. The debtor must claim exemptions within a statutory period of being served with the wage garnishment order.

Object to the wage garnishment: If the debtor objects to the wage garnishment, they can request a hearing. This hearing provides an opportunity for the debtor to present their objections to the wage garnishment and for the creditor to respond. The court will then decide whether to grant the debtor’s request to object to the wage garnishment.

Begin garnishing wages: If the debtor does not claim exemptions or the court denies their request to object to the wage garnishment, the creditor can begin garnishing the debtor’s wages. The creditor must provide the employer with a copy of the wage garnishment order, as well as instructions on how much to deduct from the debtor’s wages. The employer must then begin garnishing the debtor’s wages in accordance with the wage garnishment order.

It’s important to note that the wage garnishment process in New York can be complex, and it is often advisable to work with an experienced collections attorney to ensure that the process is handled correctly. Feel free to call 212-684-5454 to discuss.

Additionally, there are limits on the amount of wages that can be garnished in New York, so it’s important to be aware of these limits when pursuing wage garnishment as a means of collecting a debt.

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