Would I have to first get something in the mail before a garnishment?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Would I have to first get something in the mail before a garnishment?

Hello, I moved out of an apartment in September 2015 due to getting laid off from work. I owe my ex-landlord a balance of a litter over 3,000. She hired a company Rent Recovery to get the money from me. I agreed to Rent Recovery that I do owe this debt. They were willing to enter me into a payment arrangement, however I was told that they will not send me monthly statements showing proof of payment. They also said that I cannot mail the payments in that my only option is to give them my debit card number and track my payments myself. Is this right? Can they really do this? Can I be garnished by them? I refused to give them my card number by the way. Thank you for your time.

Asked on February 6, 2017 under Bankruptcy Law, Michigan


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

The collection agency and your ex-landlord have to go to court and get a judgment against you.  The judgment can be enforced with a wage garnishment.  You will receive notice of the wage garnishment because it will be set up with your employer.
Since there hasn't been any court judgment against you, the collection agency cannot set up its own wage garnishment with your debit card.  
If you agree to a payment plan where you are making the payments as you mentioned, that would be acceptable, but don't let them have your debit card because they could easily steal money from your account; especially considering their unethical action in this matter.  You might want to file a complaint against the collection agency for violating the Fair Debt Collection Act.

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