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What is wage garnishment?

Simply, wage garnishment is the process in which a court orders your employer to pay your creditors a portion of your paycheck to recover your IRS debt. This process involves a legal step which is only taken during serious matters. For the average consumer, wage garnishment can be very "trying" since it can cost you rent money, mortgage money, food money, gas money, and any other money saved for emergencies. The process can also be very embarrassing and leave a negative mark on your credit score – it can affect your credit ratings.

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Wage garnishment – an explanation

The IRS – Internal Revenue Service has a special process, which can be interpreted as "wage garnishment" to recover outstanding tax dues or "IRS dues" from individuals. The IRS has enough time, in fact excess of it, as it may appear, to monitor all unpaid taxes owed by citizens to the government in the form of IRS debt. And once you get "flagged" for their recovery process, your life can be a certain "hell" as you "interact" with their recovery officials. However, the IRS cannot just start recovering their dues via "wage garnishment" recovery process, certain criteria needs to be met before it can be done. In addition, the recovery process is pre-defined. The conditions are:

  • It’s mandatory for the IRS to send you an official "notice" or "intimation" before the recovery process can be initiated. The notice is generally sent at least 30 days prior to the recovery procedure.

  • The "debtor" should have "defaulted" on the IRS tax payments. There should be a certain outstanding tax amount "payable" to the government.

  • The federal law agencies can enforce wage garnishments as outlined in the "Consumer Credit Protection Act". The guidelines are to be strictly followed during the debt recovery process.

  • The wage garnishment amount or your IRS debt depends upon numerous factors such as the marital status of the defaulter, the total amount owed as tax debt, and the number of dependents that need to be supported.

  • Besides the wages garnishment, the IRS also possesses full rights to recover the IRS dues from bank accounts of the taxpayer.

  • The IRS supports arbitration process and supports IRS tax debt help. If you or your representative can "convince" the IRS officials that it’s difficult or impossible to pay the back dues, you could avail some waivers in the form of IRS tax relief or IRS tax debt relief.