Wage Garnishment in Kentucky

Are you concerned that a creditor may garnish your wages? Here are some facts to know about the law in the Commonwealth of Kentucky related to garnishments.

First, a creditor must obtain a court judgment. No garnishment can be had without a court judgment entered against a debtor.

Second, based on the judgment award, a creditor must then send (“serve”) the wage garnishment to the judgment debtor’s employer, which may be by regular mail. 

Third, only a debtor’s “disposable earnings” are subject to garnishment.  Disposable earnings are defined as “earnings after legal deductions”

Fourth, Kentucky limits the amount each pay period that can be garnished from a debtor’s wages to the lesser of:

  1. 25% of an individual’s disposable wages per pay period.  This 25% maximum is all that can be garnished each pay period no matter how many different garnishments are served to the debtor’s employer. The creditor that is the first to serve the employer is entitled to have its garnishment fully satisfied before the next garnishment in line becomes effective.
  2. Disposable earnings that exceed 30 times the Federal minimum hourly wage (currently $7.25/hour) for the hours worked.

Finally, after a wage garnishment is served to an employer it continues to be operative until the full amount is satisfied. The judgment creditor need not renew or refile a wage garnishment for it to continue until the judgment is paid.

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