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Stop Wage Garnishment in Kansas

Sarah Edwards | June 22, 2023

Sarah Edwards
Legal Expert
Sarah Edwards, BS

Sarah Harris is a professional researcher and writer specializing in legal content. An Emerson College alumna, she holds a Bachelor of Science in Communication from the prestigious Boston institution.

Edited by Hannah Locklear

Hannah Locklear
Editor at SoloSuit
Hannah Locklear, BA

Hannah Locklear is SoloSuit’s Marketing and Impact Manager. With an educational background in Linguistics, Spanish, and International Development from Brigham Young University, Hannah has also worked as a legal support specialist for several years.

Summary: Kansas has strict wage garnishment laws that allow creditors to seize up to 25% of your disposable earnings. You can avoid wage garnishment before it happens through debt settlement. SoloSettle makes settling your debt easier. Otherwise, you can stop wage garnishment by filing a claim of exemption.

Owing a creditor money can make anyone feel a little anxious, especially if they don’t have the means to make regular payments.

Financial problems can quickly spiral out of control, resulting in late fees, penalties, and extra interest. If you don’t get on top of the matter fast, your creditor may take more drastic action, like suing you for unpaid debt.

Act quickly if a creditor decides to sue you. Losing a debt lawsuit can result in a judgment against you that your creditor can use to garnish your wages or even freeze your bank account.

You don’t want to see your hard-earned money go directly into the hands of a creditor, especially if it will harm your ability to pay for other vital items, like rent or groceries.

Don’t ignore the case; you will only be handing over your financial security to your creditor. Take control of the situation to prevent the harsh consequences of a successful debt lawsuit.

Avoid wage garnishment through debt settlement.

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No creditor can randomly garnish your wages

You can take solace in knowing that your creditor can’t suddenly contact your employer and tell them to start withholding your wages to pay back a debt. The creditor must go through the proper legal channels first.

If your creditor decides the only way to get money from you is through wage garnishment, it will start by filing a lawsuit against you. You’ll know your creditor is suing you when you receive a court Summons with a copy of your creditor’s Complaint.

A Complaint outlines the reasons for the lawsuit, such as nonpayment of an outstanding debt. It will state the amount you owe and any identifying information concerning the obligation, like the creditor’s name, your account number, and the last transaction made.

You’ll want to review the Complaint for any inaccuracies. For instance, if the Complaint lists your account number incorrectly or misrepresents the total outstanding debt, that’s important. You can include mistakes in the Complaint when you file your official response to the lawsuit, which is known as an Answer.

It’s imperative to file an Answer in a debt lawsuit. Filing an Answer prevents your creditor from requesting a default judgment against you.

Rather than give in immediately to your creditor’s request, the judge must listen to your defenses before making a decision. You can explain your reasoning to the judge if your creditor has seriously overstepped its boundaries and has no valid claim.

Do you need to file an Answer to a debt lawsuit in Kansas? Use SoloSuit’s Debt Answer template to get started on the process.

If you don’t have a strong defense to the lawsuit, you’ll need to resolve the debt before your court date to avoid a judgment. You have two choices for debt resolution: paying the debt in full or arranging a settlement.

Avoid wage garnishment through debt settlement

Repaying the debt is the ideal solution. When you repay a debt to a Kansas creditor, you don’t need to worry about a lawsuit anymore. Your creditor will drop the case against you and report your debt paid to the credit bureaus. You won’t need to fear wage garnishment or any other legal ramifications concerning the debt anymore.

However, you might not have the money to repay your debt in the short time before your court date. If that’s the case, you’ll need to consider debt settlement. In a debt settlement, you offer your creditor a percentage of the obligation’s value. In exchange, it agrees to release you from the remainder of the debt and drop the claim.

Debt settlement benefits everyone. You’ll save money and avoid a judgment and potential wage garnishment. Your creditor will receive most of what you owe, and it won’t need to go through any more legal hoops.

Want to learn more about the debt settlement process? Check out SoloSuit’s helpful video that describes the process:

Kansas has tough wage garnishment laws

Why is it essential to avoid a judgment? Because if your creditor wins a judgment, it can start the Kansas wage garnishment process. Kansas has some of the strictest wage garnishment laws in the country. If you’re the subject of a wage garnishment, you could lose a sizeable chunk of your monthly income.

Under Kan. Stat. Ann. § 60-2310, the limitations on wage garnishment are the lesser of:

  • 25% of your weekly disposable earnings.
  • The amount your disposable earnings exceed 30 times the federal minimum hourly wage, which is currently $7.25.

Disposable earnings equal the amount of your salary after required withholdings, such as federal and state taxes. Required withholdings do not include voluntary deductions, like your health and life insurance premiums.

Let's consider an example to put the Kansas limitations on wage garnishment in perspective.

Example: Sherry has an outstanding loan with Pumpernickel Bank for $2,000. She defaults on her payments, and Pumpernickel Bank sues her for unpaid debt. Sherry’s a bit careless and ignores the lawsuit, thinking it will go away. After Pumpernickel Bank wins a judgment against Sherry, it decides to start the wage garnishment process. Sherry currently makes $1,000 weekly in disposable earnings from her job as a gardener. Under Kansas law, her employer must withhold $250 weekly from Sherry’s pay since it's the lesser of the two options. The other option is $782.50, or $1,000 - (30 x $7.25). Her employer will withhold the $250 for eight weeks until Sherry repays the loan.

Stop wage garnishment in Kansas

Some types of income are exempt from wage garnishment in Kansas, including:

  • Social Security disability and retirement benefits;
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits;
  • Veteran's benefits;
  • Black lung benefits;
  • Cash assistance payments under the Temporary Assistance for Families (TAF) program;
  • Cash assistance payments under the General Assistance (GA) program;
  • Unemployment compensation payments;
  • Workers compensation payments;
  • Certain pension benefits and retirement funds, including KPERS

If you receive any of the types of income mentioned above, you are exempt from garnishment. As such, you can stop a wage garnishment in Kansas by filing a claim of exemption.

Don’t let your Kansas creditor garnish your wages

No one likes dealing with creditors, especially when they’re behind on their payments. However, if you don’t get control of the situation, you might face wage garnishment. Don’t let creditors take your pay; instead, try to resolve the matter quickly by repaying or settling the debt. You’ll thank yourself for your efforts when you can move on.

Ready to start the Kansas debt settlement process? SoloSettle can manage debt settlement for you.

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