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I live with my boyfriend and his wages were attached years ago. Now they are attaching my wages, can they do that?

Salinas, CA |

My boyfriend's debts are medical related.
I never was served.
I never signed anything.
We have lived together for a long time, 20 years.

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Attorney answers 3


You need to check the court case number and see what has been filed in the case. Is it the same case as your boyfriend's case? Did they add your name as a defendant in the old case or did they file a new lawsuit against you. In any event, you will need to sit down with a lawyer for a consultation, about one hour, and have the lawyer review the relevant paperwork that you will obtain from the court's file(s) in the case(s).


The only way your wages could have been attached would be if you have been sued. Most courts post their records online so I would be searching the court records today even though the courts are closed. Your employer should have provided you with the attachment/garnishment paperwork, and if they haven't, you need to request this information. Hope this perspective helps!


Ms. Bunce and Mr. Lysle are both correct, as usual. To have your wages garnished or your bank account levied, you would need to have been named in the debt collection lawsuit for this medical expense. If you were named and served with a lawsuit, you would need to defend the lawsuit, either by hiring a lawyer or doing it yourself. Many people who represent themselves or ignore the Summons and Complaint or who fail to file a timely response, end up with a money judgment against them, which the Plaintiff's collection attorney can enforce by wage garnishment, bank levy, and other procedures. Is it possible that you were named in this lawsuit but did not see it and did not know you needed to get a lawyer or respond to it?

It would be rare to name someone in a collection lawsuit, who never signed any agreement to be responsible for the debt and who is not married and never been married to the debtor, such as your boyfriend. Perhaps you did not recall that you signed papers during the admission process for him with this medical provider to be liable, if he failed to pay? These are the sorts of questions that would need to be answered to know what steps should be taken next. I'd suggest you contact an experienced debt collection defense attorney.

I also have linked below to my legal guide on wage garnishment for your review.

Robert Stempler (please see DISCLAIMER below)
Twitter: @RStempler

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