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Can a creditor Garnish my bank account without notifying me?

Riverdale, GA |

A default judgement was made against me 2yrs ago because I failed to answer to the charge in 30 days. ( this was a default church loan my father opened in his name and at the time I was a secretary and my name was on the checking account only-i was no co-signer etc) about 1 yr ago i filed a motion myself to open and set aside default judgement i went before the judge and never heard back. well my dad filed bankruptcy so i guess this creditor is still going after me, i just checked my bank account and i have a hold of $53,000 in my account by this crazy creditor. no one has called me, sent something certified or anything. can they do this? please any help would be appreciated!!!

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Best Answer

The creditor is required to send you notice of the garnishment within 3 days of the garnisheed being served. If the do not, then file a traverse (have an attorney file it). Please don't make the same mistake and do it yourself. If you ignore this and do it yourself, do not state the reason in the traverse or the creditor will know what to correct. Then, they can simply file a new garnishment, serve you with notice, and dismiss the first one. That way, there will be no gap during which the funds are available for withdrawal.


You have screwed up every step of the way and in not spending a few hundred dollars on a lawyer you have probably lost $53,000.

Mistake one: not answering the case. That means you lose. That is almost never fixable. The facts of the case can never change now.

Mistake two: thinking your fathers bankruptcy helped. Unless it was a 13 it did not.

Mistake three: filing to reopen default a year after the fact. That simply had no chance (and the fact you didn't followup is even worse.

Mistake four: expecting that you'd get warning on a garnishment? Of course not. If you knew it was coming, you'd be able to take out the money. You don't hear about the garnishment until after the account freeze.

What do you do now? Your $53,000 mistake may not be fixable because you didn't think you should spend a tiny amount on a lawyer two years ago. But see a lawyer, show him the litany of mistakes and see if you have options. Bankruptcy may be the only one, and you'll probably lose much of the $53,000 in that, but may possibly get some help. And while I doubt you have other options, a lawyer can review everything to be sure.

By the way, putting your name on a checking account has many consequences. That was also something you might have asked a lawyer in advance.

The creditor ISN'T crazy. They're doing exactly what all creditors do.

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thanks for the input


You have already been notified - when you received notice of the judgment. Consider talking to a bankruptcy attorney, who can give you advice on all kinds of debt relief options.

The DiGiulio Law Firm, LLC.

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You need to go to the courthouse and get a complete copy of the court file that has the judgment against you. Without a thorough review of this file, no attorney will be able to tell you that bankruptcy is your only option. However, based on your story as you told it in the question (including the fact that you "filed a motion [your]self to open and set aside default judgment"), I am somewhat pessimistic that you would have a non-bankruptcy option. However, like I said earlier, no one can say that definitely without a review of the file.

Skaar & Feagle, LLP maintains offices in Marietta (770 427 5600) and Decatur (404 373 1970), Georgia. The information ("the answer") provided above is for general information and educational purposes only. The answer should not be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. Posting the question and reviewing the answer does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. My firm will ask you to sign a written contract prior to the commencement of representation in any attorney-client relationship. Please contact 770 427 5600 or 404 373 1970, if you wish to discuss your situation further. Skaar & Feagle, LLP accepts select consumer rights cases. These cases include, but are not limited to, cases of abusive and unlawful collection activity, debt defense, credit reporting of false or obsolete (old) information, high interest lenders (title pawns, payday loans), debt management plans, and fraud or unfair practices in the sale and financing of automobiles.


You are in a difficult situation. You need a lawyer and i suggest you contact one

The information provided on this website is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice or as forming an attorney-client relationship. No attorney-client relationship between the reader and Abbas Kazerounian has been formed.

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