If you have fallen behind on your student loan payments one way lenders can collect on the debt is through wage garnishment. By taking a portion of your paycheck before you even see it, the lender is guaranteed to receive their money rather than wait in hopes you will make your monthly payment. Sounds awful, right? It is, but there are some things you should about wage garnishment and your student loans.
First, understand that garnishing wages isn’t going to happen overnight. In most cases, your lender will attempt to collect on the debt through other avenues before turning to wage garnishment. This means that there are several opportunities for you to resolve your delinquent debts before having to be subject to a garnishment order. A student loan lawyer can best review your options for getting out of default and back on track.
Second, wage garnishments most often require a court order. This means that your lender cannot just implement a garnishment order at any time, but will have to take the steps necessary to go to court to prove they have made other attempts to collect on the debt unsuccessfully. This process can take weeks or months, which means it is important to review your situation quickly to avoid a garnishment.
If you have been unable to resolve your debt or are already under a garnishment order there are still ways to get back on track. If you have a federal student loan you can terminate the garnishment order by rolling your loans into a new Direct Consolidation Loan with the U.S. Department of Education. This will allow you to elect an income-based payment plan that is determined based on your budget, providing you with a payment you can afford and likely much lower than what is being garnished from your paycheck.