Can someone explain wage garnishment exemptions for a credit card debt judgement?

The current law says 85% of gross wages are exempt. My gross is $1271 bi-weekly with 85% of that equaling $1080, the remaining 15% being $190. I don’t know if this means $190 is taken from my net pay after taxes or if it means the $190 is available for garnishment but not before taxes are taken out – which leaves literally nothing for creditors to take. But the law reads that 85% of my gross pay is exempt, meaning I should expect that amount in my check (unless taxes takes out more). I’m just looking for clarity .

Asked on July 21, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Massachusetts


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

From what you have written with respect to the laws of your state as to the 85% of your gross pay being exempt from garnsihment, such means that $190 of your pay is subject to garnishment on a bi-weekly period.

If you have deductions from your bi-weekly pay, such deductions are still taken BUT do not apply as a credit to reduce the gross pay amount.

As such, $190 would be up for grabs each pay period for a wage garnishment concerning a judgment against you.


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