Wage Garnishment Trends in the U.S.

Sep 18 2014 - Compensation - Gail Cecchettini Whaley

A recent report from ADP examined wage garnishment trends across the United States. In a figure that might be surprising, the research found that 7.2 percent of U.S. workers have had their wages garnished — usually for child support, school loans or taxes. Wage garnishment involves withholding money from an employee’s paycheck to pay to a creditor.

The majority of wage garnishments, according to the report, involve child support. The highest garnishment rates occurred for those between ages 35 and 44, in the Midwest, and in manufacturing industries.  Across the board, wage garnishment increased with the size of the company.

The ADP report analyzed aggregated, anonymous payroll data from 2013 of 13 million employees age 16 and older.

California employers should be aware that the amount of wages that can be garnished on a weekly basis from an employee’s disposable earnings is different than the federal amount.

If you receive a court order to garnish an employee’s paycheck, you will need to understand the rules. Rules also vary depending on whether the garnishment is for child support or another reason.

Gail Cecchettini Whaley, CalChamber Employment Law Counsel/Content

More information is available on HRCalifornia page for Garnishment Against Wages and on the California Courts website.

Leave a Comment