Will My Employer Learn if I Have a Wage Garnishment in New York?

As the recession continues many people are having trouble paying their bills even if they have a job. A common question we get from employees in Manhattan and other surrounding areas is whether the employer gets notified if there is a wage garnishment.

When a creditor obtains a judgment against a debtor in New York the judgment creditor will typically seek to promptly enforce the judgment and recover money to satisfy the judgment. This topic is covered in our prior Blog posts and on the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on our web site.

A common method of enforcement of a judgment is by a wage garnishment. This is accomplished with the assistance of a New York /City Marshal in New York City or County Sheriff. Up to ten percent (10%) of a judgment debtor’s wages (25% in any pay period, not exceeding 10% per year) can be garnished.

When the Marshal or Sheriff receives a judgment for enforcement they will first send a demand to the judgment debtor for direct payment of 10% of the judgment debtor’s wages to satisfy the judgment.

If the judgment debtor makes direct payment to the Marshal or Sheriff each month then the wage garnishment will not be delivered to the judgment debtor’s employer for wage garnishment. If, however, the judgment debtor fails to start making direct payment to the Marshal or Sheriff after receiving notice from them regarding a wage garnishment, then the wage garnishment will be delivered to the judgment debtor’s employer. This can have a negative effect on employment because an employee who has a wage garnishment may be viewed as irresponsible by the employer.

A personal bankruptcy filing will stop a wage garnishment. Your employer will be notified that you have filed bankruptcy. While the bankruptcy filing will be on your credit report in the future, most employers do not check credit reports for current employees. For that reason a bankruptcy filing may be preferable to a wage garnishment for a current employee.

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