When you are struggling to make ends meet financially, it can be frustrating to have debt collectors calling you or even worse, having your wages garnished. A strong federal law, called the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, protects consumers against certain unfair collection practices, which include:
• Calling you repeatedly to annoy or harass you.
• Trying to collect more than you owe.
• Fail to send a written notice of the debt.
• Threatening violence.
• Threatening dire consequences (i.e. – lawsuits, criminal prosecution, wage garnishment, jail time, permanently ruining your credit).
• Using profanity and abusive language.
• Calling before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m.
• Revealing debt to third parties (i.e. – family, neighbors, friends, co-workers, etc.).
• Contacting you at your work, after you have requested them to stop.
• Failing to verify disputed debts.
• Ignoring cease communication requests.
Following the 2008 recession, Florida legislatures have made changes in the laws to help individuals and families struggling to keep their homes and stay out of debt. Under Florida Statutes Section 222.11, there are specific exemptions laid out for those who are having their wages garnished by creditors, the IRS and hospitals.
Section 222.11 provides exemptions from wage garnishments if:
• You are the head of the household and earn more than $750 a week in disposable income (unless the person agrees to this in writing).
• If you are exempt from wage garnishments, your accumulated income deposited in a financial institution is also exempt for six months after the deposit.
• Any persons not considered “head of the household” are also exempt from having 75 percent of their earning garnished (over six-month period).
• If the head of the household does earn more than $750 a week in disposable income, creditors cannot garnish wages unless they receive written permission specified under the statute.
If you have any questions on the topic of wage garnishment or are in financial crisis and considering filing for bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.