The garnishment is so high that I can barely survive off the little remaining income. How can I get this child support garnishment lowered?
I am unable to give you legal advice on divorce. I can give general divorce help for men, though, my knowledge is based on Missouri child support laws where I am licensed to practice.
Each state has specific laws regarding garnishments for child support arrears. Where I practice, the state may garnish a parent’s wages to satisfy past child support payments as long as the amount garnished does not exceed federal wage garnishment limitations.
Title III of the Consumer Credit Protection Act governs the federal garnishment limitations. Title III allows up to 50 percent of an employee’s disposable earnings to be garnished for child support if the employee is supporting a current spouse or child, who is not subject to the support order, and up to 60 percent if the employee is not doing so. An additional 5 percent may be garnished for support payments over 12 weeks in arrears.
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Thus, if the monthly amount being garnished from your disability payments, which are considered income where I practice, exceeds 65 percent of your disposable income then you need to request a modification from the state, pursuant to the guidelines of Title III.
Additionally, you need to make sure all your children have been judicially emancipated in order to ensure you are just paying the arrears of child support and not continuing to incur additional child support payments. Your child support payments could be larger than necessary if the state believes your children are still entitled to child support.
Further, you can also contact the state to determine if they are willing to take a lesser amount of child support if you may a large amount in a lump sum.
Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men, so please consult with a divorce lawyer in your jurisdiction.