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Can a credit card company garnish a Federal Retirement Pay

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Joined: 16 Feb 2009
TrashTalk2u's page
Posts: 1

172 Magic Points

Subject: Can a credit card company garnish a Federal Retirement Pay
Posted on Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:20 am  

I have retired from the U.S. Civil Service (Not Military). I find that I do not have enough income to continue to pay my credit card debt. Will the federal government allow credit card companies to garnishee my retirement pay?

Alimony and child support are not an issue, so you don't need to tell me about that.


Joined: 27 Jun 2006
carol's page
Posts: 1299
Location: Los Angeles, California

30054 Magic Points

Posted on Mon Feb 16, 2009 5:56 am  

Social security benefits can only be garnished for recovery of Federal Taxes and alimony and child support obligations but, it cannot be garnished for recovery of credit card or any other types of debt. However the creditor can bring judgment against you to garnish your bank account. If the creditor garnishes your bank account then your account may be debited in full whenever any money gets credited in the account.
Keep in touch


Joined: 17 Jul 2006
Justin's page
Posts: 1238

28944 Magic Points

Posted on Mon Feb 16, 2009 8:10 am  

Yes, I agree with Carol. Your retirement pay can never be garnished as it forms a part of social security benefit. But you should inform the bank that the money that gets credited into your account is your social security benefit so that even if the creditor brings judgment against you, they cannot garnish money from that account.
All the Best Smile

Joined: 29 Jan 2009
aby's page
Posts: 32

114 Magic Points

Posted on Tue Feb 17, 2009 6:33 am  

Social security benefits, pension payments can not be garnished then its violation of federal law.Social security can be garnish for certain things to enforce child and alimony obligations, pay federal tax and debts owed.otherwise you can put your ss account separatly .you have to tell your bank that its asocial security account so that bank wont allow to garnish it.


Subject: Bank garnishment
Posted on Wed Jun 24, 2009 6:36 pm  

I am a retired civil servant. If credit cards begin to garnish my checking account, how much time to I have before it happens?

Joined: 11 May 2009
rachael's page
Posts: 233

6576 Magic Points

Posted on Thu Jun 25, 2009 4:52 am  

Hi Shine,

Do you deposit the retirement pay in the checking account you have mentioned? As far as I know, retirement pay is a Social Security Benefit that cannot be garnished to pay off credit card debts.

Subject: bankaccount garnishment
Posted on Sun Sep 06, 2009 7:08 pm  

Ihad to retire to care for my husband our only income is social security and military retirement can credtt card debtor garnish our bank accout if this is our only deposits in our account?

Joined: 03 Nov 2007
goodnatured's page
Posts: 3931

437 Magic Points

Posted on Sun Sep 06, 2009 7:38 pm  

They can and they will, you need to make your bank aware that these deposits are social security or retirement, they are both a non garnishable income, they will or they should then keep a garnishment from happening on their end.

I would go talk to the people that work at the bank where your checks are deposited.

Joined: 26 Feb 2008
fireyone's page
Posts: 4246

123 Magic Points

Posted on Tue Sep 08, 2009 1:03 pm  

Yes this is true. Both are ungarnishable but the credit card companies will do everything in their power to collect. You need to make sure you financial institution has a full understanding of what is going on. Also if they were to take you to court let the judge know these are your only two sources of income that get deposited.
If they would however attach the account after letting the bank and judge know I would imagine you could get your money returned it would just take some time.

Joined: 21 Sep 2009
fdlcsr's page
Posts: 2

42 Magic Points

Subject: garnishment of retirements
Posted on Mon Sep 21, 2009 10:07 pm  

Is creditors can't garnish your retirement regardless if you can afford or not?

Subject: Garnishment of Military Retirement Pay
Posted on Sun Oct 04, 2009 3:58 am  

Several years ago I had my checking acct. garnished monthly for a little over two years each and every month (no particular date of the month) more or less at random for a credit card debt...The bank knew that the money being deposited each month was from military retirement pay through direct deposit...I was unaware until now that I could have put a stop to this garnishment but the bank allowed this to go on...The attorney that issued this proceeding, did so with an unsigned court document was in my opinion just like many other attorneys (not saying all are like this) but this one was totally out of line...He even stated to the court in a signed document that my military retirement pay was "non-earned, as if it was a gift...I pay taxes on this income so for income purposes it is indeed considered "earned!" Nonetheless, the debt was payed off but there were times when I had to pay overdraft fee's for such automatic deductions I had coming out of my acct. each month for car insurance, health or other deductions because at random my acct. was garnished without warning...Had to borrow money from family members on many occasions to pay for these numerous overdrafts for over two years...End of story!

Subject: garnishment
Posted on Fri Nov 13, 2009 7:53 pm  

can a military retirement be garnished by credit card companies or store credit card?

Joined: 10 Oct 2009
debranewell2008's page
Posts: 591

108 Magic Points

Posted on Fri Nov 13, 2009 10:10 pm  

Hi Ric,

No it can not be garnished. As the others have said you need to let your bank know that the money going into your account is your retirement money. So if they try to garnish your account they can stop it from happening.
Tamara Holmes

Joined: 17 Nov 2009
TamaraHolmes's page
Posts: 1

25 Magic Points

Posted on Tue Nov 17, 2009 6:40 am  

I would need additional information. You would also need to take action(s) to protect your rights. You could lose your rights by not carefully segregating your funds. So long as the retirement checks are from an ERISA Qualified Plan, they're exempt. The county pension and the S.S. are also exempt. But, you need to protect the exemptions. Read everything you receive from the Court if they sue you!
For more info you can visit the site:

Joined: 26 Feb 2008
fireyone's page
Posts: 4246

123 Magic Points

Posted on Tue Nov 17, 2009 2:33 pm  

I do not believe that military retirment can be garnished but am not 100% sure. If you want to find out so your know for sure you can do couple of things. One is try calling your atty. general in your state. He or she is equipped with lots of knowledge regarding collection issues.
You can also continue your search online and see if others have had a similiar question. One thing you will need to know is if the creditor would get a judgment on the debt and your benefits can not be attached then you need to clarify with any bank that you deposit the retirment money into that these funds are specifically retirement funds and let them know about the collector. Sometimes once money is deposited and no there is no knowledge of all the above, they will try to take it.

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