Post-Bankruptcy Credit Collections

Estimated reading time: 3 min.

Everyone experiences a credit collection call or two at some point in their lives. While some may receive more than others, none of us are exempt from the frequent interruptions to our daily lives when creditors call looking for the late payment owed to them. Sometimes it may come as a surprise, other times every ringtone makes you cringe and screen your calls because you know who is on the other end…again.

So let’s say you’ve successfully filed and completed bankruptcy

The debts that cause credit collectors to call you are now discharged, right? Once you’ve filed for bankruptcy, it is true that these calls should immediately stop. In reality, this may not be the case, and you may find yourself screening the same calls you did before, perhaps with a little more ease but with just as much annoyance. Luckily, you may be able to work with the same lawyer you trusted to help you complete your bankruptcy claim to discuss this and other issues after bankruptcy is completed.

How do I stop collection calls after bankruptcy?

Bankruptcy puts in place an automatic stay as soon as you file.

What is this? The purpose of an automatic stay is to protect you from phone calls, emails, and letters that are attempting to collect debts from you that you may find annoying at best and harassing at worst. Ongoing attempts to contact you regarding your debt by the creditor is illegal from this point forward and should cease unless the creditor has expressed permission of the court. With best intentions assumed, creditors use software systems that may take a little time to catch up to the automatic stay order. However, there may be other debt collectors that simply choose to ignore the law and continue to contact you for what is owed no matter what.

If you continue receiving calls after a reasonable amount of time has passed, you might assume that these creditors are breaking the law, especially if you’ve taken the time to inform them that you have filed and/or completed bankruptcy proceedings. In this case, it is beneficial to be knowledgeable about what your rights are and do not assume you have to live with harassing phone calls, emails, and letters. After all, these are stress-provoking even if you’re confident you no longer owe them money. In this case, get in touch with your bankruptcy attorney so they can assist in ensuring the creditors’ systems are up to date or to bring the matter into a court of law.

What Steps You Could Take

  1. Provide an explanation to your creditors
  2. Take detailed notes of each credit collecting interaction
  3. Contact your bankruptcy lawyer
  4. Take creditors to court.

While this may seem extreme, moving forward after bankruptcy while you continue to receive debt collection calls is challenging. If they won’t stop after initial simple steps are taken, suing them for harassment and emotional suffering may be necessary to stop the abuse.

Wage Garnishment Attorney – Atlanta Georgia

Stopping Wage Garnishment

Atlanta Wage Garnishment Attorney Matthew Cherney of Cherney Lww Firm

Atlanta wage garnishment attorney Matthew Cherney of Cheney Law Firm

Atlanta wage garnishment attorney Matthew Cherney of Cherney Law Firm can stop your wage garnishment immediately. If you live in the Atlanta area and creditors are garnishing your wages or they are threatening to garnish your wages, Cherney Law Firm can stop it.  By filing for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy you will immediately get relief from wage garnishment.

Cherney Law Firm has been helping his clients fight wage garnishment in Georgia for over 8 years. With 3 offices in the Atlanta area, there is a convenient location for you to choose from.

Free Consultation

If you are unsure if bankruptcy is right for you, the best thing to do is to schedule a free consultation. Call us at 770.485.4290 or fill out our contact form at the bottom of this page.  We can meet in any of our Atlanta Area offices and Mr.Cherney will be happy to discuss your wage garnishment situation.

Don’t Ignore Wage Garnishment

Chances are that you are receiving phone calls and letters about the debt that you owe. Instead of ignoring all of these calls and letters, it is always best to speak with your creditors to see if there are alternatives that can be worked out. Communication is the key.

Wage Garnishment Laws in Georgia

In order for a collection of Involuntary wage garnishment in Ga, the debt collector must have the right of garnishment. There are two types of wage garnishment types, court ordered or non court ordered.

Court Ordered wage garnishment

In a court ordered wage garnishment, the debt collector files a suit in court to collect a judgment against the debtor. If successful, they can legally garnish your wages or your bank account. You can and should appear in court to defend yourself if you believe that you do not owe the debt.

Non-Court Ordered

There are circumstances when a court ordered judgment is not necessary for garnishment in Atlanta Georgia.

  • Student Loans
  • IRS Debt (Taxes)
  • Child Support

Can A Creditor Legally Garnish my Wages in Georgia?

Wage Garnishment is Legal In Atlanta Georgia

The question I always get from clients is, are Wage garnishment is legal? In Atlanta, Georgia. much like most cities in the USA, The answer to that question is yes. Your creditors can legally require your employer to with hold up to 25% of your wages (in some case more) but they must first get a court order to do it. They will send you a notice that to appear in court and whether you appear or not, the court can make a judgment against you.

How to Stop Wage Garnishment in Georgia

The ideal situation would be to contact Atlanta wage garnishment attorney to help you before a garnishment has been ruled against you. Attorney Matthew Cherney can then try and do debt negotiation for you with your creditor. If this does not work, filing bankruptcy before the order against you will stop the moment that you file. That means that the creditor can no longer proceed to try and get a wage garnishment or try to collect the debt that you owe.

One other reason that is very important to some people to stop a wage garnishment before a court grants it is because by stopping it before it happens, you employer will never find out. Once a creditor is granted a judgment against you, they will send a notice to your employer with forms and guidelines about the wage garnishment judgment against you.

It is important to note that even if you are already having your wages garnished, we can help. Unfortunately, this is the situation that a majority of our clients find themselves in. We will stop it immediately and come up with a plan to end your debt problems and give you a brand new start.

Read our Testimonials

Finding a knowledgeable and experienced Atlanta wage garnishment attorney is very important because you need someone who understands wage garnishment law in Georgia. At Cherney Law Firm, all we do is bankruptcy and everything related to debt negotiation and wage garnishment. Feel free to read our testimonials  and read our Google reviews. We are very proud to be one of the best reviewed in the Atlanta area.

How Much Does an Atlanta Wage Garnishment Attorney Cost?

We offer a FREE CONSULTATION to all of our clients so you can see for yourself that Cherney Law Firm has the experience and knowledge to help you. We will explain to you what will happen if you choose to use our services or not. Every situation is unique, so we do not have a one price fits all model. It will all depend on what service we provide to help you. Whatever service we do provide, we will offer you a monthly payment. plan.

Georgia Wage Garnishment FAQs

Can my wages be garnished for child support is Georgia?

In the state of Georgia, a court ordered child support comes with automatic income withholding's. Child support garnishments can be up to 50% and even more can be added on if there are arrears.

Can a credit card company garnish my wages in Georgia?

Your credit card company must file a lawsuit in the state of Georgia and win a judgment against you in order to garnish your wages. Once the judgment is made against you, they can garnish your wages or your bank account.

Can my wages be garnished for missed car payments?

If you are late on car payments, your lender will repossess your car if you do not continue to make payments. Once the car is repossessed the lender will sell your car, usually at an auction. If your lender sells the car for less that you actually owed, the difference becomes what is called a deficiency amount. If there is a deficiency amount, your lender can sue you to get a judgment for the deficiency amount in a court of law. If they are successful, they can legally garnish your wages or bank account.

Can my wages be garnished for taxes in Georgia.

The IRS does not need a court order to levy your wages, your bank account or seize your assets in the state of Georgia. A tax levy will be filed against you and you will have 30 days to appeal it. If you do not appeal it OR you lose your appeal, the IRS will use it's levy powers to collect any debt owed to them , A tax levy will stay on your credit report for 7 years, even if you have satisfied the debt.

Can a landlord garnish my wages for rent?

If your landlord is able to get a court judgment, they will be able to garnish your wages or your bank account. They must file a suit against you in the court of law and win. You will be notified and have a chance to defend yourself in court if you think that you do not owe the debt. If you fail to appear, the landlord will most likely win the judgment against you.

Medical Bills & Bankruptcy: What You Need to Know


Estimated Reading Time: 3 min

Health care costs have been rising exponentially over the course of several years.

Beginning with the introduction of the healthcare marketplace, benefits from employers began to decrease as covering premiums for employees rose impacting the bottom line of many companies.

As a result, you have taken on increased medical expenses even for routine appointments making affording preventative healthcare as well as reactive healthcare back-breaking for your bank account.

You might be considering bankruptcy but don’t know where to start or if this will impact the care you receive from your current providers. The good news is, it is not unheard of to file bankruptcy due to medical bills. About 60% of all bankruptcy claims include medical bills or have such listed on the petition.

What kind of bankruptcy can I file?

At the end of the day, bankruptcy is bankruptcy. There is no special kind you can seek out to discharge this kind or that kind of debt. Something to consider when you move towards filing is that bankruptcy clears all unsecured debt (e.g. credit cards, utility bills, friends and family loans, etc.)

Filing for bankruptcy leaves you little room to haggle over what is shown to the court. When filing, you will be asked to be forthcoming with every debt you own as well as all assets, income, and expenses.

Chapter 7 is what’s known as straight bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy does not clear every single debt you have depending on the form. For example, should you owe child support or income tax, these debts will not be forgiven. Other debts, such as student loans, may only be discharged under extraordinary circumstances. Also, if you’d like to maintain property after the bankruptcy is complete, such as your car or home, you will be expected to keep and maintain these debts with regular, on-time payments. While this form of bankruptcy has many appealing attributes, not everyone qualifies for Chapter 7.

Chapter 13 allows you to repay your debts over three to five years. Your payment through the court will be determined by the debts you owe as well as what amount of disposable income you have coming in each month. This means your monthly expenses are taken into consideration when making payments, unlike when you’re paying these debts directly to the creditors. At the end of your payment plan, you could end up paying less than you actually owe and have the remaining debt discharged.

Will I get to keep my doctor?

The answer to this question depends on your physician. Many hospitals and physicians understand why patients file bankruptcy and will continue to see you. At the same time, a physician holds the right to refuse future treatment should you discharge their fees in bankruptcy.

At the end of the day, you have options. You can always find a new physician should yours stop providing treatment due to bankruptcy. While that reality may sting, bankruptcy could be the answer to preserving your future.

Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy

Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in the State Of Georgia

Chapter 7 bankruptcy information for Georgia - Attorney Matthew Cherney

Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy attorney

In Georgia, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy is legal proceeding asking the courts to discharge your debts. If successful, most unsecured debts will be forgiven, and the debtor gets a “fresh start”.  Once a chapter 7 is completed, the debtor is free of major debt. There are assets that you may be able to keep during and after your bankruptcy. How you structure your bankruptcy can have a major impact on the results that you get.

The State of Georgia has three United States Bankruptcy Court districts

Filing for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Ga.

Once you figure out which district you are living in, it is time to file.  There are two ways that you can do this in Georgia, you can file by yourself or you can hire an attorney to file for chapter 7 for you.

How to File for Chapter 7 by Yourself in Georgia

If you are confident in yourself and would like to file for chapter 7 on your own, there are many resources that will help you in the state of Georgia. There are online guides from companies like Upsolve, or you can go to the State of Georgia Bankruptcy  website to find out information on the forms that you need.

Hiring an Attorney to File Chapter 7 Bankruptcy in Georgia

If you are uncomfortable with all of the paperwork and ramifications of improperly filing for chapter 7 by yourself, you can hire an attorney to represent you. Hiring an attorney has a distinct advantage because that is what they do. An attorney will know all of the Georgia bankruptcy laws and can prepare and file all the needed paperwork on your behalf. They are also available to answer any questions throughout and even after your bankruptcy is discharged.

Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Exemptions

The purpose of filing for bankruptcy is to achieve debt relief in order to rebuild a sense of financial security.  In Georgia, exemptions in chapter 7 are very important. It is nearly impossible to do so if everything you own is taken from you during bankruptcy. Many people assume that you must lose everything including things such as your finances, your home, and your car when you file, but this is not true. According to United States Code §522, a person who files for bankruptcy may request certain exemptions, including interest on home loans and vehicles, any life insurance policies that have no yet matured, and other such assets.

It is important to note that some states will allow the person filing to choose between using Federal exemptions or state exemptions. The State of Georgia does not allow you to do this. You must use Georgia state exemptions. There are a few instances that you may be able to use federal non bankruptcy exemptions.

Some of the most common Georgia bankruptcy exemptions are :

  • Homestead
  • Vehicle
  • Wages
  • Personal

What happens to your property?

When you file for a chapter 7, you will most likely have to give up anything that isn’t exempt under Georgia law. The bankruptcy trustee will liquidate any non-exempt assets to pay your creditors.

Georgia Chapter 7 Means Test

 what is the Georgia Chapter 7 Means Test

The first step in filing Chapter 7 bankruptcy is to take a means test. Unless there is proof that you cannot afford to repay your debt based on your income and other factors, you cannot file under this chapter. Your income will be measured against the median income of a family living in your state that is comparable in size to your own family.

Median Income for Chapter 7 in Georgia

If your average income from the last 6 months is less than or equal to the median income, you will be considered eligible for Chapter 7.

In cases where your income is too high for Chapter 7, the court will determine how much disposable income you have in order to pay off some or all of your debt in a Chapter 13 plan should you choose to go that route. The court looks at your income and subtracts debt payments, living expenses and any other required payments to see what amount you can feasibly pay off each month.

Once a means test proves that you are eligible and you come up clean in all of the other areas determining eligibility, you must fill out all necessary forms and petition for property exemptions so that you can keep any necessary items, such as furniture or your car. This process is not simple, and a mistake could cause further harm, so make sure that you retain an educated Georgia bankruptcy attorney with years of experience in Chapter 7 laws and procedures. With such legal assistance, discharging your debt could result in the financial freedom that you’ve been dreaming of achieving.

Chapter 7 Credit Counseling

If you have taken the means test and it has determined that you are eligible for Chapter 7, the next step before you file is to take a pre filing credit counseling course. These courses are online and your attorney can usually provide you with the information on where it can be taken. After your bankruptcy has been discharged, you will also be required to take another credit counseling course. This is usually done with the same credit counseling agency that you used before you filed for your bankruptcy.

Georgia Bankruptcy Laws:

The state of Georgia has laws that will protect debtors from debt collectors, one of the most important is the Automatic stay.

Automatic Stay With Chapter 7

As soon as you file for a chapter 7 bankruptcy in Georgia, an automatic stay is imposed. The Automatic stay prevents creditors from pursuing any collection efforts from that moment forward. This includes taking legal action against you. Although the automatic stay is considered temporary, it will protect the debtor from creditors the whole time until the chapter 7 is discharged. At that point it will be no longer needed because once the Chapter 7 is discharged in Georgia, the debt is gone forever, Creditors can no longer attempt to collect the debts that have been discharged.

Chapter 7 Trustee in Georgia

You will be assigned a Georgia Chapter 7 Trustee

Once you have successfully filed for chapter 7, one of the next steps in the process is a court appointed trustee will be assigned to your case.  It is the Trustee’s job to overlook your case and go through all off the paperwork and details to make sure that there is no fraud. The Trustee will also assist in the liquidation of your assets.

It is important that all of your paperwork is  filled out correctly and that you list all of your assets. The trustee just wants to make sure that all assets will be distributed correctly. If the trustee somehow finds out that you are hiding assets, he can ask the court to deny or revoke your discharge.

Georgia Bankruptcy – The 341 Meeting

Once a trustee is assigned to your case, a 341 meeting will be scheduled. The purpose of the 341 meeting is to let the Trustee go through the paperwork you have filed. He will ask you questions about your debt and assets. Your attorney will be present with you during this meeting but cannot answer questions on your behalf. Creditors can also attend the meeting but they usually do not. It is mandatory that you appear to answer questions from the trustee about your case.   The questions asked by the trustee are all about the paperwork that you have filed. It is very important that you are honest with all of your answers. If you chose to hire an attorney, they will prepare you with everything that you need to know about what to expect at you 341 creditors meeting.

Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Discharge

 Last step is a Georgia Chapter 7 Bankruptcy discharge

A chapter 7 discharge is a permanent order from the court prohibiting creditors from taking any form of collection action on discharged debts. This includes legal action and communications with the debtor, such as telephone calls, letters, and personal contacts. While the debtor already had any temporary collection attempts halted with an automatic stay, the discharge is permanent.

The Courts will give the debtors creditors ample time (about 60 days from the 341 meeting) to file any objections. After that period has elapsed, they will send you a letter stating that your chapter 7 bankruptcy has been discharged.

Convert from chapter 13 to a chapter 7 in Georgia

Many times when a person is in a chapter 13 bankruptcy, they will be unable to keep up with their payment plan. When this happens, it is possible to convert from a chapter 13 to a chapter 7.

Tricks for Filing Chapter 7 in Georgia

There really are no tricks to filing for bankruptcy in the state of Georgia. Ir really has to do with whether you qualify or not. If you are in a situation that you think you may not qualify for chapter 7, you can always speak to your attorney about a chapter 13. By taking the means test, you will be able to see if you qualify for a chapter 7 or a chapter 13.

We are Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Attorney’s in Georgia

Cherney Law Firm Can help you file for chapter 7 bankruptcy protection.  We have 3 locations in the Atlanta, Georgia area and serve all of the cities in the Atlanta Metro area.

If you are considering whether a chapter 7 bankruptcy is right for you and you live in the state of Georgia, fell free to contact Cherney Law Firm. We are only a phone call or e-mail away and we can answer any questions that you have.  Cherney Law has handled thousands of bankruptcies in Georgia. We have seen every situation, there is no need to feel shame, we are here to help.

How Much will Chapter 7 cost?

We have Offices in Cobb, Cherokee and Fulton Counties and we offer 100% free consultations. Let us help you relieve the stress that your debt is causing you. Wage garnishment, repossession, foreclosure, credit card debt and judgments are our areas of specialty. We accept payment plans.

Call Now Button