Have Your Wages Or Bank Account Been Garnished?
What is a Garnishment?
Garnishment is a legal order, typically pursuant to a final judgment, for collecting money on behalf of a judgment-creditor from a judgment-debtor. In most cases, a writ of Garnishment is served on the debtor’s employer or financial institution ordering that a certain amount be withheld pending further order of the court.
My Wages Have Been Garnished?
Your wages may be exempt from garnishment. Florida Statutes Section 222.11 exempts from Garnishment by a creditor 100% of the “earnings” of an individual who is “head of family” unless a person has agreed otherwise in writing. An additional requirement in order for the earnings to gain this exempt status is that the earnings must be “credited or deposited in any financial institution.”
Do I Qualify as a “Head of Family?
Florida Statutes Section 222.11 exempts from Garnishment by a creditor 100% of the “earnings” of an individual who is “head of family” unless a person has agreed otherwise in writing. An additional requirement in order for the earnings to gain this exempt status is that the earnings must be “credited or deposited in any financial institution.” If these requirements are met, the earnings will be “exempt from attachment or Garnishment for 6 months after the earnings are received by the financial institution if the funds can be traced and properly identified as earnings.” If an individual is not a “head of family,” only 75% of the earnings will be exempt (assuming the other requirements are met).
What else is Exempt from Garnishment
The following are exempt from garnishment:
- Unemployment Compensation
- Annuities and life insurance
- Retirement accounts, including Roth IRA, IRA, 401k
- Disability income
- Prepaid college funding
- Social security
I have a Joint Bank Account with my spouse
Funds owned by a husband and wife as tenants by the entireties are “beyond the reach of a creditor of either one of the tenants. Such funds are immune from garnishment except where the debt was incurred by both spouses.”
Funds in Bank account don’t belong to me?
For garnishment purposes, funds on deposit in a financial institution are presumed to belong to the person or entity named on the account.” However, this presumption is not conclusive. The determinative issue is where the equitable, as opposed to the bare legal, title to the funds resides. If any person other than defendant claims that that the property (funds) in the hands or possession of any garnishee is that person’s property, she/he and shall make an affidavit to the effect, the court shall impanel a jury to determine the right of property between the claimant and plaintiff.
How We Can Help You
We will review your situation carefully and give you the advice that you need. Call or text us at 888-877-5130.