Wage Garnishment Limits in New York

Garnishment is a legal solution authorized by a court when all other attempts to have the debt paid back have failed. Having to go through this is a very difficult thing. You go to work every day to pay your rent or mortgage, utility bills, gas for your car, etc. If you have a family to support, but you see money being taken out of your paycheck, it can put a lot of stress on your shoulders.

There are garnishment laws that are set up to prevent creditors from over-extending their reach into a debtor’s pocketbook. Particularly, the laws in the state of New York allow garnishment of either 10% of the debtor’s gross weekly income or 25% of their disposable weekly income, whichever one is less.

A difference between garnishment procedures in other states and New York is that in the latter, the debtor is to be served with a notice to garnish her wages before her employer is notified. This notice is called an “income execution,” which is delivered to the debtor through a city marshal. After that, they have a 20-day grace period to make arrangements with a creditor before his or her employer is notified about the garnishment.

Moreover, only disposable income can be garnished in New York. This is the amount of weekly earnings the employer takes home after deductions for federal income taxes, Social Security and unemployment insurance.

New York state law and federal law prohibits employers from firing a debtor employee because of a single judgment, but according to the U.S. Department of Labor, this law does not apply when it comes to a second, or even third, garnishment. When it comes to this, employees may be forced to quit their job rather than subject to wage garnishments. Also, they can decide to declare bankruptcy to avoid the judgment altogether.

However, before opting for either choice, you should go to court first to fight any case against you. Do your research if you feel like a garnishment is about to come your way. The laws and limit in the state of New York, as listed above, are different than other states so do not get confused.

Archana Sabesan

Archana Sabesan

Archana Sabesan is a junior at North Carolina State University. She is currently pursuing a major in Psychology, with a primary focus in Child Psychology, and a minor in Spanish. After graduating, she plans to attend graduate school to obtain her PsyD degree in Clinical Psychology. Her experiences at Stanford University and Duke University as an Undergraduate Research Assistant have helped her to develop an effective research regiment and build on her observation skills. She hopes to open a private practice of her own in the future.

Every summer, Archana works at Kumon, a math and reading workshop, tutoring children between the ages of three and 18 in these subjects. She used to be enrolled in this program herself, so this allows her to connect with the students and give them the one-on-one help that they need. Archana is also currently a member of NC State’s Psychology Club, Rotaract Club, and EKTAA (NC State’s premiere South Asian Student Organization).

Archana was born in India, and moved to North Carolina with her immediate family when she was 7 years old. She speaks mostly Tamil, the native language of South India, and English in her home. In addition, having taken Spanish classes since 6th grade, she can speak and understand it pretty well too. Archana enjoys spending time with her family and friends, watching movies, listening to music, and going to the gym. She also loves to travel, and hopes to travel the world one day and learn about all the different cultures!
Archana Sabesan