A debtor court will freeze the payments and put you on a payment plan. A chapter 7 might end the nightmare for you. Go and talk to a bankruptcy attorney.
There are many factors that can affect how best to handle this matter and the best advise is usually to hire an attorney immediately. Unfortunately the advice above is a guess that is based on very scanty facts. Circumstances of all sorts can change the ultimate answer you need. If you want to know how best to handle the situation, make an appointment with an attorney and get good solid advise based on more exact facts. The money spent might give you the peace of mind you need. The information provided is not intended as legal advice that can be relied on in part because we do not have the entire the situation. No Attorney/Client relationship is intended, implied or created. We are a debt relief agency and we help people file for relief under the bankruptcy laws.
For them to be garnishing they would have had to have got a judgment. If you had an agreement in place then they should have not had sued you. Something is not adding up. You very well may have a good case. Call us for free evaluation and consult. We have an LA office
Kazerouni Law Group, APC is a law firm concentrating its efforts in the area of consumer law, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1692 et seq. (“FDCPA”), and California's Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, California Civil Code §§ 1788-1788.32 ("Rosenthal Act"). Our lawyers are specially trained in the Federal FDCPA, Consumer Defense, and other consumer related matters. Our goal is to protect you against unfair, deceptive and abusive debt collection practices. Creditors, professional debt collectors, and attorneys who violate the law are subject to paying damages, statutory penalties, and the consumer's attorneys fees and costs. If you feel you have been abused, deceived or treated unfairly, you may need a lawyer. We can be reached at 800-400-6808, or through one of the evaluation forms on this or at our own website at www.kazlg.com. 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. If you are in the State of California and would be interested in a formal free consultation either visit Kazerouni Law Group, APC website at www.kazlg.com or call me toll free at 800-400-6808.
You need to file a claim of exemption and a financial declaration with the levying officer to reduce the garnishment amount. Those forms should have been given to your employer, to give to you, at the time of the garnishment. If not the forms are available from the CA Courts website, below.
If you believe the creditor has violated the terms of any payment arrangement or not appropriately credited your payments, you should seek the services of a local consumer rights attorney.
For help regarding the pending garnishment see this the CA Courts website: http://www.courts.ca.gov/11418.htm
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Filing the claim of exemption is a good idea, but it won't necessarily provide immediate relief. If the creditor opposes the claim of exemption, the 25% will be deducted from your paycheck until the judge rules on what amount should be taken from your check. You might eventually get back some or even all of the money that had been taken out, but that could take several weeks or more.
Also, any claim that you may have for breach of a settlement or claims for unfair debt collection practices could take months or years.
Ultimately, bankruptcy may be your best and quickest option. You should contact a local bankruptcy attorney right away.
First, the firm is a debt relief agency according to the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. We help people file for bankruptcy. We also do other stuff and we do it well, but Congress wants me to post this notice. Second, nothing on this site is legal advice. You are not my client unless you enter into a written agreement signed by you and me.
You need to consult an attorney who sues debt collectors who engage in abusive debt collection practices. If you can show that you have been making payments pursuant to an agreement, the debt collector may be in violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and may owe you a statutory penalty, any actual damages, damages for mental distress, and attorney's fees.
Richard Scott Lysle