Credit card garnishment laws in California

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 11/11/2008 - 01:27

In California what can a credit card judgment garnish and can they affect my husband if he is not listed on the credit card debt. What do you think about credit card default judgement? Do you know the credit card garnishment laws?

I am not real sure about California credit card garnishment laws, did you google it and see what comes up? that is usually how I start researching something. Hang out, I am sure that someone will be along soon to help you out.

Tue, 11/11/2008 - 03:03 Permalink

Hi Deborah
Only the primary borrower and the co-signer are responsible to pay back a debt. If your husband has not been a co-signer to the debt, then he is in no way responsible for the debt, and so his credit report will not list the outstanding debt amount. That's why your husband need not to think about any credit card judgement. However, if you find the negative listing in your husband's credit report, you can send a dispute letter to the credit bureaus asking them to remove the listing.

Wed, 11/12/2008 - 04:49 Permalink

Yes, in California, wage can be garnished for repayment of credit card debts. There are only 4 states in US where wage cannot be garnished. They are Texas, North Carolina, South Carolina and PA. Go through your credit card garnishment laws properly to know more about judgment and garnishment. However, not more that 25% of your disposable income can be garnished. However, as far as I know, if you pay back the judgment amount within 10 days with the clerk's office in the court, you can stop garnishment of your wages by submitting the receipt you receive from the clerk's office with your employer.

Wed, 11/12/2008 - 05:09 Permalink

Hi Besty, It depends on your state. There are some states (4 in total) where a debt collector can not garnish your wages unless it is for taxes or child support. Can you give us all a bit more information as to where you are from, how old your debt is, have you sued by credit card company before garnishment and when you made the alst payment and we can see if you can be garnished and if you are still able to even be held legally responsible for the debt. The more information you give us the more we can help. Also is this the original creditor?

Mon, 11/24/2008 - 23:21 Permalink
linda leboon (not verified)

waltman wweinberg and reese have contacted me about a debt at least four years old the last payment was made dec 20 2004 i beleive the ststute of limitations is four years in pa if this is correct what do i do they claim they sent a letter dated dec 19 2008

Tue, 12/30/2008 - 01:23 Permalink

Yes, the Statute of Limitation is 4 years in PA and since you made your last payment on 20th Dec 04, the SOL has expired by now. However, you should send a debt validation letter by certified mail and wait for their validation. While validating the debt they need to provide you with details of your last payment towards the debt. If it is in Dec 04, you need not make any payment towards the debt even if they force you to do so over phone. This is because if you make any payment towards the debt, the SOL will rewind and you may be required to pay off the entire debt.

Tue, 12/30/2008 - 11:43 Permalink
Rebecca (not verified)

Mann Bracken has a judgment against my husband for $11, 444, per a letter they sent in October 2008. December 2 they send out another letter saying the amount is $12,131. This is from a $3,300 balance transfer on a Discover Credit Card from 2003. Doesn't the amount due stop once they get a judgment? Has anyone heard of cash settlements for 30% of the total amount due? How can you be sure that the judgment will be removed? Can credit card companies garnish wages?

Fri, 01/09/2009 - 05:33 Permalink

If the judgment is for $11,444, then you need to pay that amount only. They cannot charge $12131 from you. Now, the creditor has the right to collect the outstanding debt from you legally either through garnishment of your wages or through garnishment of your bank account. At this stage I don't think that it is possible to go for debt settlement with your creditor because there is already a judgment against you. Debt settlement is possible when you find the debt listed with the credit bureaus and the creditor considers as a bad debt. That's why you should be aware of credit card garnishment laws before taking out a credit card.

Fri, 01/09/2009 - 10:30 Permalink

Judgment is a public record which cannot be removed from your credit report before seven years. However, if you think that you do not owe the debt and file a motion to vacate a judgment, and your judgment is vacated, then only you can get a judgment removed from the credit report. Judgement on credit report may lower your credit score by as much as 100 points and sometimes even more.

Fri, 01/09/2009 - 10:50 Permalink

Scott, I was under the impression that a person only had 30 days from the time the judgement was issued to file the motion to vacate? What are the guidelines surrounding a motion to vacate? What would be the impact of credit card judgment on my credit score?

Sat, 01/10/2009 - 03:41 Permalink

One simple correction Scott....
Judgments CAN BE REMOVED... (see my site's examples page)
The FCRA requires 100% completeness and accuracy. If any element of the reporting does not meet those standards, the item is subject to correction or deletion.
Trust me when I tell you that the majority of all public records fail to meet the standards, and that's why we have examples of several kinds of public records posted on that same examples page...

Not "pitching", I just don't want ANYONE to give up hope.... It CAN be done!

Sat, 01/10/2009 - 20:37 Permalink
LG (not verified)

Can a credit card company place a judgement on a checking or savings account in California?? and seize funds as if it were a IRS lien or child support issue? What is a credit card judgement lien? Thanks,

Wed, 01/21/2009 - 22:57 Permalink

Yes, if a credit card company can bring a judgment against you to recover the outstanding debt, he can garnish your bank accounts for the same. Whenever, there is a credit into your bank account it will get garnished and this process of garnishment will continue till the time the debt along with the charges associated with the judgment is repaid in full. So you should know what can credit card companies do.

Thu, 01/22/2009 - 05:45 Permalink
linda stokes (not verified)

if a credit card company gets judgement against you in pennsylvania can they get into your checking or savings account

Thu, 01/22/2009 - 12:28 Permalink
linda stokes (not verified)

What do you mean when you say when there is a credit in your checking account it can be taken to pay off your debt

Thu, 01/22/2009 - 12:36 Permalink

What do you mean when you say when there is a credit in your checking account it can be taken to pay off your debt

This means that if a judgment for garnishing your bank account is passed, any money that gets credited into your bank account will be transferred to the creditor and this will continue as long as the judgment amount is repaid in full. In PA, it is true that wage cannot be garnished except for outstanding tax and alimony and child support obligations, but your bank account can definitely be garnished.

Fri, 01/23/2009 - 09:30 Permalink

Some times I wonder if it is worth keeping money in the bank account, you may be further a head to pull it and leave a small balance.

Sat, 01/24/2009 - 20:53 Permalink
cathy (not verified)

In the state of Texas can a credit card company get judgment and take any items that you own and that you have paid for. Is there a statue of limitations on on a credit card judgment?

Tue, 02/03/2009 - 01:02 Permalink

In Texas, the creditor cannot garnish your wages for recovering credit card debts. However, they can bring judgment to garnish your bank accounts till the time the debt is fully repaid. The Statute of Limitation on judgment is 10 years in Texas. This means that the creditor can execute garnishment order within this 10 years from the date the judgment has been passed. However, the judgment can be renewed before the completion of this 10 years by the creditor.

Tue, 02/03/2009 - 08:50 Permalink
peggy (not verified)

My father receives social security benefits, that is his only income. He was recently hospitalized and now requires a caregiver and blood work every week. He is unable to pay his credit card debt and just received a letter stating the account will be forwarded to an attorney to obtain a judgement against him. We live in PA, my name is also on the deed to his home. How can a credit card company place a judgement on you if the credit card is unsecured? My father in 82 years old and has health problems. I have tried telling the credit card company this on numerous occations, they call at least 8 times a day. I don't understand how a judgement can be put in place for an unsecured credit card. No real property was used to obtain the card. Thank you.

Fri, 02/20/2009 - 19:31 Permalink

Changing of your last name after marriage does not mean that you no more owe the debt. If the creditor brings judgment against you to garnish your bank account, they can do so and the process of garnishment of you bank account will continue till the judgment amount is repaid in full.

Mon, 03/09/2009 - 07:05 Permalink
Bill (not verified)

American Express is in the process of filing court papers for a judgement on what was $38k, now appears to be $77k (with atty fees). Im out of work and can not pay. Will the attys attach bank accts right away?

Thu, 06/25/2009 - 02:27 Permalink

Hi Bill,

If your creditor files a lawsuit for non-payment of debt accounts, you will receive the summons from court. To prevent a default judgment being entered on your credit file, you should file an answer to the summons, within the due date.

In court you will get an opportunity to explain to the judge that you fell behind in making payments, because of genuine reasons. You can also request for a settlement plan. If your creditor agrees to accept a settlement offer, it is also possible that the interest accrued on the actual debt amount and the attorney fees will be waived off.

Thu, 06/25/2009 - 04:03 Permalink
Freda (not verified)

Hi Bill,

I agree with rachael. American Express has to get a court order before they start to garnish your wages. Generally creditors send a garnishment notice to the debtors, before they begin to garnish the bank accounts.

You can escape garnishment, if you are able to negotiate with your creditor to reduce the debt amount. You may be able to cut a deal with them, which is accepted as satisfactory by both the parties (you and your creditor). If you expecting to be employed soon, you can request them to hold back payments (in case you cannot afford to make any payment). In that case creditors will require you to sign an agreement, stating that you will pay the debt amount as soon as you start getting your wages.

Thu, 06/25/2009 - 04:27 Permalink
gloria412 (not verified)

My wages was garnished from my bank account although I did not admit to the charges if my wages are not direct deposited can they still charged me for this outstanding garnishment

Fri, 07/10/2009 - 16:51 Permalink
Denise (not verified)

Can a person who took out a $10,000 credit card loan for another person, get a judgement against them to pay back the loan, in California? The parties entered a written agreement that the borrower would deliver to the other, the monthly payments to meet the terms of the credit card company, but of course stopped payments after 2 months.

Tue, 08/04/2009 - 15:42 Permalink
tfudger (not verified)

I had credit cards go into default back in June 2004 while I lived in California. I tried a debt consolidation company but my major creditors would not deal with them. I moved to Indiana back in 2006 and now I have 2 of those "other" companies that buy your debt and they are trying to sue me for these outrageous amounts. What do I do? I went to court already for one and they never showed so the judge dismissed the case, but he told me the company could still come after me if they so choose at a later date. And the other one postponed the date and it has been 3 months. All they do is keep calling my house. Is there any way to stop all of this? How long can they continue to harass me?

Tue, 08/25/2009 - 13:23 Permalink

Hi tfudger

How long can they continue to harass me?

As long as they don't get you to pay the debt. No, seriously, are you sure you owe them as much money they are demanding off you? If not send them a validation letter. If they validate the debt, then maybe you could try and get in to a settlement plan with them (if, they agree at all). Make them a decent offer and negotiate well. Usually companies do not want to agree to these kinds of settlements but you never know...

To stop them from calling you continuously you could send them a cease and desist letter. You will find a sample here

Don't forget the DV letter if you haven't sent them yet.

I can also give you a sample for the same right here

Wed, 08/26/2009 - 07:24 Permalink
pat s (not verified)

can a company take your house for a credit card judgement in the state of pa? what happens if u really have no money to re-pay the judgements?

Tue, 09/08/2009 - 21:12 Permalink

no, but they can have a sheriffs sale, you can contact your local sheriff or your local magistrate to find out what could happen next. Nothing worse than not knowing.

Calling to get information does not indicate guilt.

Wed, 09/09/2009 - 01:42 Permalink

I have neer heard of sherriff saling in PA for credit card debt. I would believe that they could but wouldn't they have to go through the court system for something like that to take place? I would have to believe there would be a colurt date set so that the debtor could place his say in on the situation and then a decision be made form there. How does it work?

Wed, 09/09/2009 - 17:52 Permalink
kc (not verified)

i had a judgement placed agaist me in 2001 for a credit card they got a judment against me and now 8 years later a new law firm has picked it up and is trying to collect the debt and apply 8 years of intrest how do i stop this and stop them from garnishing my check

Tue, 09/15/2009 - 04:11 Permalink
Connie (not verified)

Can my bank account be garnished if the only deposit is my husband and my social security disability checks? My son passed away at 36 and had no insurance. We lived with him. When he passed we were left homeless and lived in our car for 9 months while trying to get help in maryland. We sold some of his things and took what savings we had to bury him. We paid it all but $900. We finally decided to move to Texas where we could afford to get a place and get help. We still barely make it. Now the funeral home has a lawyer who got a judgement against us and has filed Writ of garnishment of property other than wages --what does that mean and what can they do? They actually filed it on my Old Bank in Md--there's nothing there. Can they now file where I am in Tx.

Sun, 10/11/2009 - 00:17 Permalink
izzymt (not verified)

In Mt can your house or car be taken if you still on them?I already have a wage garnishment and my bank account taken.

Sun, 10/11/2009 - 02:38 Permalink

They can file anywhere they want to, however you will have to look up the garnishment laws in Texas to see if they can actually take anything. I know here in Pennsylvania they can only garnish your wages for child support and taxes.

So look up the garnishment laws for Texas, you should be able to find them by googling it.

Sun, 10/11/2009 - 04:18 Permalink

A good route, for the ones who had asked previously in this post, to get a collector to stop calling is to send an SOL expiry letter to them certified mail. You must be sure that your credit card debt is past the Statute of Limitations. You can also send a cease and desist letter.
Now be sure this will only stop then in the mean time. Once you do send out these letters you can be sure it will be sold and past on to the next junk debt collector. No telling when it will stop. I guess maybe some debts just "age out" and become not worth collecting anymore.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 01:13 Permalink

Make sure that you send the debt validation letter first and give them time to respond before you send the cease and desist letter, other wise they will not respond with the debt validation and that could work in your favor.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 01:44 Permalink

Good point good natured. A lot of people send out debt validation letters and forget to add a time period for which they would like a response. If you simply send out a letter and do not list a time frame collection agencies could put off validating the debt. My advise would be to add a reasonable time frame in the letter. It has to be a period in which they would have time to respond. Try giving them 30 days. There are good sample letter available here at this forum under letters of credit if anyone is interested.

Tue, 10/13/2009 - 10:20 Permalink
don (not verified)

in california can a credit card comp. place a judgment against your wages if you are on commission and rec. your money spiratically and can your bank account be placed on freeze and can they take your car if it is paid off. also, if you are in this position due to health issues like cancer can they till take your ssd

Sun, 10/25/2009 - 19:34 Permalink

Too many times they go simply ignored if you don't send them certified mail, return reciept requested or they will say they did not recieve them. When you send it this way then they have no way of ignoring it or acting like they did not recieve it.

Mon, 10/26/2009 - 00:06 Permalink

DON, Hello and welcome to the forum. I do not believe they can attach any form of social security in any state. Before they can attach anything else they must have a judgment to do so. This is when you would have to appear in court in front of a judge. If the judge is aware that your only source of income is from Social security disability then he could still pass a judgment but they would not be allowed to take any money from your bank account that was given to you by SSD. I also believe that if your one vehicle is your sole form of transporrtation they can not take that either.

Mon, 10/26/2009 - 13:17 Permalink
dhr (not verified)

I signed something at the sheffifs office I think it was a judgment about maybe 7 years ago, well yesterday I got a letter from a lawyers office and just wondering if they can seize my doublewide and In NC can a creditor intercept your tax returns to satisfy the debt

Thu, 10/29/2009 - 17:55 Permalink
todd (not verified)

when would a credit card take a judgment on you .2 mouth 6 mouth 1 year and can you settle befor eyou goto court with them

Sat, 11/07/2009 - 02:07 Permalink
Bcbscorp (not verified)

I have a CA judgement against me that stemed for a $3000 credit card. The judgement was made in Aug2008 and I guess I screwed up and let them get a default judgement (I thought I was going to get paperwork for a court date, but never did). Anyhow I recieved notice today that they are garnishing my wages and that the judgement was for $7k with an additional $800 in interest since then.

I know I can call and see if they will reduce the garnishment amount but is there any way to get them to reduce the judgement amount at this point or am I just out of luck?

I have been paying off all my debt the last 2 years, they just got a judgement before I could pay off their amount as the debt settlement company I have been working with settles from lowest to highest.

Mon, 11/09/2009 - 23:51 Permalink

I believe I would talk to who ever is handling your debt settlement and see what they can do. Because I'm not 100% sure but I think after they get the judgment approved by the court. I don't think there is anything you can do except pay it. I know it stays on your report for 7 years. Others should be by to help you with this later.

Tue, 11/10/2009 - 00:18 Permalink
Bcbscorp (not verified)

Thanks for the response! The paperwork I got says I can contact a lawyer but that just screams more money to me.

The joys of being young and uninformed.

Tue, 11/10/2009 - 17:27 Permalink
Davidjones23 (not verified)

Hi, my wife had credit card debt before we got married. We can't pay it and it is going to become a judgment. We lost our house, own an old cheap car and have no assets anymore to be recovered. Can anyone garnish my wages as her husband for this amount?


Fri, 12/18/2009 - 01:06 Permalink