A wage garnish is a legal procedure through which a specific percentage of your income is withheld from you in order to pay off a debt. In order for your wages to be garnished, someone would have had to issue a court order.

Pearson Butler is not like other large tax firms in the city of Clearfield. Other tax firms will charge you an arm and a leg just to help you fill out and submit paperwork. This is a tax relief law firm that believes every single client deserves the right to personally meet with their attorney. Your attorney will help stop collections as quickly as possible and work out a negotiation deal that is in your best interest.

Here are some of the questions clients commonly ask of the attorneys at Pearson Butler.

Will The IRS Garnish My Retirement Pay?

If you currently owe the IRS past due federal income taxes, they have the right to garnish your wages. In the legal world, this is a process that is known as a levy. The levy will allow the IRS to go after your actual retirement account and/or the payments that you receive. There are regulations in place to limit how much money the IRS can garnish from your retirement pay.

There are restrictions that prevent the IRS from garnishing any of your retirement benefits that you receive because you needed them. This means if you are receiving a supplemental social security income because you are old or sick, the IRS is not allowed to garnish that income.

The IRS is also restricted for removing funds that you are not actually entitled to. This means that if you are still employed and you are not permitted to remove any money from your retirement fund as of yet, the IRS cannot remove any money either.

Can The IRS Garnish My Social Security Check?

Legally, whether or not the IRS can garnish your social security check really depends on who you owe money to. Financial creditors such as those who you have unpaid cell phone bills and unpaid utility bills with and financial institutes that may have lent you money or given you a credit card are unable to garnish your social security check. If you owe money to the government, however, the government has both access and the rights to garnish your social security check.

The federal government has the right to garnish nearly any of your sources of income (including your social security) when they are collecting money to pay off a number of different debts including:

  • Federal Student Loans
  • Federal Income Taxes
  • Child Support
  • Alimony
  • Nontax Debt

Just keep in mind that this has to be a social security check and not supplemental security income. The government (or anyone else for that matter) is never allowed to garnish supplemental security income.

Where Does Child Support and Alimony Come Into Play?

There are a lot of restrictions into play when it comes to garnishing wages for child support and/or alimony. Garnishment laws make it possible for as much as 50 percent of your disposable income to be garnished for alimony or child support if you have another child or spouse you are also supporting. If you are not supporting anyone other than yourself, garnishing laws make it possible to garnish 60 percent of your disposable income.

What is Disposable Income?

Disposable is another word used in place of the phrase "capable of being thrown away". Just as the name suggestions, disposable income is income that can be thrown away. This is the income that you have left over after you've paid all of your bills.

The government is never going to garnish your wages to the point of you not being able to pay your rent, buy groceries, or keep your lights on. They do not, however, feel that you need very much additional money on top of paying your bills.

As long as you have paid off all of your bills and have food to eat, the government feels that 50 percent of your extra spending money, as most people like to call it, should be given to child support, alimony, or other significant debts that you owe.

Can a Lawyer Help Me Stop Wage Garnishment?

It can be stressful to deal with having your wages garnished on your own. This is especially true if you have additional debts that you are trying to pay off including a mortgage, medical bills, credit cards, and/or car payments. Fortunately, an experienced Utah tax attorney can help.

You have a lot of different options to consider and an experienced Utah tax relief attorney can help you figure out which option is the best. The most important thing you can do for yourself is not to feel as though you have no options left. With the right resources and a good lawyer, you can resolve these issues. Some of the options your lawyer will offer you include:

  • Compromise with the debt collector
  • Installment agreement
  • Bankruptcy
  • Payroll taxes
  • Innocent spouse relief
  • Offshore accounts

Most people are surprised to learn that the IRS is more than willing to work with you and set up a solution that pays off the debt without making you feel trapped. The problem is figuring out how to approach the IRS. This is where having an experienced Utah tax relief attorney will come in handy.

Your attorney will know what paperwork to fill out, what needs to be said, and who needs to be contacted in order to work out a better deal than the one you currently have.

Do I Have To Consider Bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy is not the best answer to everyone's problems. It really depends on how deep in debt you are. If you are someone who owes more taxes that you can realistically pay off, bankruptcy is your best option. The lawyer you hire would be able to help you determine whether or not this is the best answer to your problems.

You should never feel trapped or defeated because your wages are being garnished, and you should never struggle to pay any of your bills as a result. If you do feel lost or distressed about garnished wages and overdue taxes, a tax relief attorney can help you.