So you’ve received a writ of garnishment but don’t know what that means? If you’re unfamiliar with how garnishing works, then you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll talk about the things you need to know about how wage garnishments work in Michigan and, most importantly, how to stop them. 

If you have any further questions, it’s best to ask an experienced Royal Oak bankruptcy lawyer. Settle your concerns about legal issues like discharge, declaring bankruptcy, and many more with a free bankruptcy consultation.

Overview of Wage Garnishment Laws in Michigan

To garnish your wages, creditors have to obtain a judgment from the court. If you can’t repay a valid debt within 21 days, creditors will file a writ of garnishment. It’s essentially permission from the court to get money from your bank account, your wages, etc. 

There are two types of garnishments in Michigan:

  • A periodic writ of garnishment is used to garnish the defendant’s wages, rent payments, land contract payments, or other debt paid to the defendant periodically.
  • A nonperiodic writ takes from your bank account or other property just once. 

Is There a Cap on How Much Wage gets Garnished?

Wage Garnishment Works Michigan goes with the federal limits of the amount that creditors can take from your take-home pay. The limit is lesser of:

  • The amount by which your paycheck exceeds the 30x minimum wage;
  • 25% of your disposable income. 

Do all Garnishments have to go through court?

Certain debts allow the government to garnish your wages without taking you to court. The debts that do not require writs of garnishment include income tax debt, missed child support payments, and federal student loan debt, among others. 

How Can I Stop Creditors From Garnishing my Wages?

If your wages are being garnished, chances are that you’re overwhelmed with other financial problems, too. Garnished wages mean money taken away from your budget for groceries, bills, and rent. That’s why it’s best to stop wage garnishment as soon as possible. Here are three things you can do to stop creditors from deducting your pay each month. If you want to keep all your wages now, talk to our Royal Oak attorneys ASAP. 

Exempt Funds

One of the things a lawyer can help you with is determining if it’s possible to object to the writ. Exempt funds, like social security income or federal tax refunds, are protected forms of income that creditors cannot touch. In Michigan, the burden of proof rests on you to show that your sources of income are protected. As such, it’s best to have professional legal representation with you. 

Payment Plans

A payment arrangement is one of the most common ways to deal with wage garnishment. You can either file a motion in court to set up a payment plan or talk to your creditors directly about it. You can set up monthly payments so that it’s much manageable for your budget, compared to a court-ordered wage garnishment you have no control over.


The surest way to end a garnishment order is to file for bankruptcy. Once your bankruptcy petition is filed, the court orders an automatic stay. This court order prevents any collection efforts – like calls from collection agencies or wage garnishments from creditors. You may choose either a Chapter 7 liquidation bankruptcy or a Chapter 13 reorganization bankruptcy, depending on your income and goals. Talk to a competent Royal Oak, Michigan bankruptcy attorney to decide which of the types of bankruptcy is best for you.  

Final Thoughts

A wage garnishment order aggravates an already shaky financial situation. Don’t let it get out of hand. If you don’t know what the best option is for you, it’s best to talk to an attorney on the matter.

Our bankruptcy lawyers at Hammerschmidt, Stickradt & Associates or HS&A, P.C. aim to help individuals and families manage their financial situations and get out of debt. Consult our Royal Oak bankruptcy attorney today for a free consultation!