North Carolina Garnishment laws & HR compliance analysis

North Carolina Garnishment: What you need to know

A garnishment is an order of a court to an employer (the garnishee) to withhold a sum of money from an employee's earnings for payment of a debt. The state of North Carolina draws a distinction between garnishments for support obligations and those for other debts. There are numerous state and federal laws pertaining to garnishment. Where state laws are more restrictive than federal law (i.e., by protecting a greater amount of salary from garnishment), then state laws will govern.
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Garnishment vs. assignment of wages. Garnishment and assignment of wages are both methods of deducting money from an employee's salary to repay his or her debts. Garnishment is an involuntary procedure that is usually conducted when an employee has not paid a debt. Assignment of wages may be either voluntary or involuntary. There is more information on voluntary assignment of wages.
Respond promptly. An employer that is served with a wage garnishment must respond promptly to the notice and any other court papers regarding garnishment. Employers failing to respond to a notice or in any way ignore a garnishment run the risk of being held personally liable for the entire amount of the judgment.
There is more information on wage garnishment.
The federal Family Support Enforcement Act (42 USC 666et seq.) authorizes states to pass their own implementing legislation to ensure collection of family support; states that do not do so lose federal subsidies.
Procedure. The employer receives an order of income withholding indicating the employer's rights and responsibilities, the amount to be withheld, the penalties for failure to withhold, and other information.
Withholding begins with ...

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