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Objecting to Garnishments

If you are facing garnishment, you will get a Writ for Garnishment. Your creditor filed it to get a judgment paid by the garnishee. If your creditor files a garnishment against your bank account, your bank is the garnishee. If your paycheck is being garnished, your employer is the garnishee. Read An Overview of Garnishments to learn about garnishments generally.

You must have a good reason to object to a garnishment. There are six reasons you can use.

Mistake in the Writ

A mistake in the writ is the most common reason for an objection. Check to see if the request is correct. Verify:

  • The judgment amount
  • The date of the judgment
  • The interest accrued
  • The costs accrued
  • The payments and credits applied
  • The amount of the judgment now due

The Money Was Exempt From Garnishment

This means the funds or property can’t legally be garnished. Read Garnishment Exemptions to learn what money is exempt from garnishments.


If you’ve filed bankruptcy or the debt has been discharged through bankruptcy, you can't be garnished. When you start a bankruptcy case, your creditors are notified and they can’t garnish you while it’s pending. Creditors also can’t garnish you to pay a debt that’s already been discharged in bankruptcy.

You have an Installment Payment Plan

If you have a court-ordered installment payment plan and you’re current on payments, your wages can't be garnished.  Read Getting An Installment Payment Plan to learn more about this.

The Maximum Amount Is Already Being Garnished From Your Paycheck

There is a limit to how much of your paycheck can be garnished. If one creditor is taking the limit another creditor can't garnish more. 

You Paid the Judgment

If you have paid the judgment , including costs and interest, your creditor can not collect any more money from you.

Filing your Objection

You can use the Do-It-Yourself Objection to Garnishment tool if you have a reason to object to the garnishment. There is no cost to file an objection to a garnishment.

You must file your objection with the court within 14 days of getting the notice of garnishment to stop the garnishment. See the Checklist in the I'm Being Garnished for a Debt That Is Not Child Support toolkit for filing instructions.

If you file your objection more than 14 days after you get the notice, your money will be garnished while your objection is being considered. Money will be taken from your bank account or your paycheck to pay the creditor. If your objection is valid, the creditor should return your money.

A hearing will be set within the 21 days after you file the objection. At the hearing, a judge will decide if your objection is valid.

If your objection is valid, your money will not be garnished. If garnishment already happened, the creditor should return your money to you. This may take a while. If your objection is not valid, your creditor will get to keep the money it has collected, or move forward with the garnishment.

You can file a Motion for Installment Payments to prevent another garnishment of your paycheck. See the There Is a Judgment against Me; I Would Like to Make an Installment Payment Plan toolkit to learn more.