Take Back Your Paycheck from Wage Garnishment
If it’s been a while since you’ve paid your student loan debt, you may be at risk for losing out on your hard-earned money. Student loan garnishment is when your loan servicer can legally take money from your paycheck to satisfy defaulted student debt. When you default on your student loan, it’s only a matter of time before the federal government or private collectors come for that money you owe.
The Low-Down on Garnishment
Wage garnishment is something that affects many people and for many different reasons. Your wages can be garnished for tax debt, child support, alimony payments, and consumer debt. You can also experience student loan garnishment when your wages are garnished for defaulted student loan debt. And all student loan debt is made equal when it comes to garnishment; both federal student loans and private loans can be garnished if they fall into default.
Student loan garnishment negatively impacts your income and your job. The loan holder can tell your employer to withhold a portion of your pay (up to 15 percent of each paycheck!) to collect your debt – all without having to go to court. Even if you don’t make enough money to be garnished, the Department of Justice can sue you. And because being garnished means you’re in student loan default, your credit score is also at risk.
How to Avoid Student Loan Garnishment
The best way to keep from having your wages garnished for student loan debt is to stay out of default. This can be a lot harder than it sounds though, especially if you’ve got unaffordable payments and high student loan interest rates.
The most basic advice we can give about avoiding student loan garnishment is to make your monthly payments consistently and before the due date. It may help you to set up automatic payments, so you ensure you never miss a month.
Payment Plans Help with Affordability
However, if your payments are too expensive, it may be worth exploring other payment plan options to find one that works better for you and your current financial situation. For instance, an income-driven repayment plan takes into account your income and could offer you lower monthly payments that are more affordable for you.
Temporary Relief to the Rescue
What if making monthly payments or changing your payment plan just won’t cut it? You can always look into deferment or forbearance as options for temporary relief in making payments on your student debt. While these aren’t solutions that directly offer long-term student loan relief, they can help you get back on your feet so you can be more prepared to make your payments in the future.
If you’re already deep in the default pit, these options won’t be available to you until you get your loans back in good standing. And that’s not as easy as just making a rehabilitation payment and being back in the green with your lender. It’s a process that is often handled much smoother with professional help.
Get Help with Garnishment Issues
If you’ve already defaulted on your loans and need to put an end to your garnishment situation, don’t wait to seek help. Student loan garnishment doesn’t only affect your bank account but can result in piling fees or a withheld tax refund. While a collection agency or the government can take your money, there are rules.
From the day you get your notice of garnishment, you’ll have 30 days to stop the garnishment process by taking a step towards a solution. Whether you’re still within those 30 days or that warning period has ended, getting experienced help can ensure you don’t let garnishment get the best of you (and your paycheck).Our Student Loan Advisors know the ins and outs of those guidelines and will:
Put Wage Garnishment in the Past for Good
Once you’re out of default and no longer dealing with student loan garnishment, make it your mission to put garnishment behind you. Make your payments on time and seek student loan debt relief when you know you need it.
And if you’re ever struggling again, don’t hesitate to call one of our Student Loan Advisors to get back on track. Defaulting and experiencing garnishment once is bad enough. Doing it again is an even harder situation than before.
The Decision to Learn Shouldn’t Come with Tough Decisions About Money
Owing student loans isn’t the end of the world, but it can feel like it with no plan to move forward on your payments.We can help. We work with your unique circumstances to find a better way for you to move forward with your life, whether that’s through student loan forgiveness or another student loan solution.