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The withholding of a person's full salary or wages, especially in order to pay a creditor or the tax agency. For example, suppose one's regular paycheck would be $1500. Garnishment occurs when the person receives a check for only $1050 because the government is withholding $450 for taxes. Garnishment may also occur for other reasons, such as to pay child support, back taxes, or some debts.


A process involving three parties:

• Judgment creditor. The party who takes a judgment against a debtor (can also be the IRS or a state's Department of Revenue).

• Judgment debtor. The party who owes the debt.

• Garnishee A party who owes money or holds property belonging to the judgment debtor.

In this legal process, the judgment creditor obtains a court order requiring the garnishee to turn over funds or property to the judgment creditor instead of to the true owner, the judgment debtor. The most common garnishments are against employers, requiring them to withhold a portion of wages and salary and pay it to the creditor rather than to the employee. The second most common garnishment is against a bank, ordering it to turn over bank account funds to the judgment creditor or the IRS.

References in periodicals archive ?
Nationally, employees with garnished wages face on average 1.
Wage garnishment can have a profound effect on the employee who is being garnished, as well as the employer who must implement and comply with the garnishment order and applicable regulations," said Julie Farraj, division vice president and general manager of Wage Garnishments and Unemployment/Employment Verification Services for ADP Added Value Services.
At Bix, a San Francisco supperclub widely credited with sparking "the Martini renaissance," the Martinis are garnished with two pimento-stuffed olives, which have been marinated in vermouth.
Though Gibson's restaurant is named for the Martini variation garnished with cocktail onions instead of olives, it is common for a guest to order a Gibson - and then demand to know where the olives are.