Can the Department of Defense garnish my wages for an invalid debt?

UPDATED: Feb 21, 2012

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

Can the Department of Defense garnish my wages for an invalid debt?

I was honorably discharged from the Army before completing my original contract. I received my earned portion of my bonus but not the remaining portion which I did not earn. The Department of Defense/Department of Treasury are now claiming I owe $6,200.09 for my earned portion of my bonus. They are going to start garnishing my wages and have already taken my entire IRS tax return for this year. I am a singly mother who just started at my current employment making minimum wage. Can they do that? How can I prove that it is an invalid debt to get this stopped and to stop being harassed by them?

Asked on February 21, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Utah


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The best way to dispute the claim against you by the Department of Defense is to retain an attorney over the dispute. Unfortunately, federal law allows the department of defense to lien your wages (garnishment) before there is an adjudication of the underlying claim by way of a legal action.

One option is to contact your congress person and senator at the federal level to see if he or she can intervene in the dispute for you.

Another option to resolve the dispute is to have a face to face meeting with the Department of Defense's representative to try and iron out the dispute. Make sure you bring all your paperwork to the meeting assuming one is set.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption