Can a credit card company garnish my wages if I never received a court summons?

Asked on March 22, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Ohio

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

This is what happened.  The credit card company must have claimed to the court that you were served with the summons and complaint (the complaint is the lawsuit attached to the summons).  When you did not timely file an answer to the complaint with the court and serve a copy by mail on the credit card company or its attorney within the time set forth in the summons, the credit card company got a default judgment against you.  The credit card company subsequently obtained the wage garnishment.

You can challenge the wage garnishment because you were not served with the summons and complaint and therefore did not have an opportunity to timely file an answer to the complaint and serve it by mail on the opposing party.

You should file with the court a motion to set aside the default and serve by mail a copy of your motion on the credit card company or its attorney of record.  Your argument in support of your motion to set aside the default and stop the wage garnishment is that you were not served with the summons and complaint and did not have an opportunity to timely file an answer to the complaint.  If the judge grants your motion, the case will then be back on track and litigation will continue and you will have an opportunity to file an answer to the complaint. Then the credit card company won't be able to get a wage garnishment unless they eventually get a judgment against you.


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