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If I take somone to small claims court,will they garnish someones wages to pay me back?

Omaha, NE |

I loaned someone 2500.00 back in June 2009, they promised to pay me in full when they received there taxes back in March of 2010. I received a letter in March (2010) explaining he hit hard times, he doesn't have the money, he would sell his car etc to get me the money, asked if we could set up payments. He made a few payments to me, not he is not making any payments, stopped. I have all the documentation, him explaining in detail how he owes me money; I have the checks that I wrote out to him, numerous emails from him regarding his promise to pay me. He still owes me 1900.00, he has full time job for quite some time, makes decent money. I am not in financial position to let this go, I need the money. I don't know much about small claims court here in Omaha, NE, can they garnish his wages? Options?

Attorney Answers 3

  1. You need to sue and get a judgment first. Then you can sue for garnishment. Take all of the documentation that you have to prove that you made a loan.

    [This communication is intended as general information and not specific legal advice, and this communication does not create an attorney-client relationship.]

  2. I agree with Mr. Goldstein's answer. First sue him and obtain a Judgment and then you can collect on it by garnishment or by siezing his bank account or anything else you can find.

    Good luck.

  3. This is a common misperception about the role of the court. The court acts as a referee between parties. Therefore, the court will not garnish for you. However, if you wish to collect this debt, a small claims action would be your best bet. You should file the action, and bring all the documentation regarding the promise to pay and the amount. You should do so fairly soon as the statute of limitations is four years for an oral contract.
    If you are able to prove that someone owes you a debt, the court will award you a judgement. A judgement is a court's order that you are entitled to collect the judgement. Once you have this order, you may then file to garnish the debtor's wages. You must file the necessary paperwork, serve it properly, and then file the necessary orders to have it paid to you. Make sure you keep an accounting to insure you are not paid money in excess of the judgement.
    If the debtor earns more than exempt wages, you will receive a portion of each check to pay the debt.