If i have no assets and someone is awarded punitive damages against me, will they then garnish my wages?
Country relating to Question: United States
State (if USA): Nevada
I was involved in a fender bender where I rear ended a lady, she was fine at the scene. Now becuase I was over the legal limit she is suing me for punitive damages. If I have no assets to speak of should I be concerned? How much would she be able to garnish from my wages, would my insurance company probably settle it out of court?
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Good morning. Your insurance company is going to settle this in all likelihood. The punitive damage threat is just that....an effort for a higher settlement. But, unless you were far in excess of the legal limit to constitute gross negligence, this isn't going to happen. But, if you were sued and the award was in excess of your insurance coverage, Nevada does allow for wage garnishment. But, garnishment is limited. Title III of theConsumer Credit Protection Act protects employees by limiting the amount ofearnings that may be garnished in any workweek or pay period to the lesser of25 percent of disposable earnings or the amount by which disposable earningsare greater than 30 times the federal minimum hourly wage prescribed by Section6(a) (1) of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938. This limit applies regardlessof how many garnishment orders an employer receives. The federal minimum wageis currently $7.25 per hour. An employee's"disposable earnings" is the amount of earnings left after legallyrequired deductions (e.g., federal, state and local taxes; Social Security;unemployment insurance; and state employee retirement systems) have been made. Deductionsnot required by law (e.g., union dues, health and life insurance, andcharitable contributions) are not subtracted from gross earnings when theamount of disposable earnings for garnishment purposes is calculated.
Finally, if you have no other assets, you could always file for bankruptcy protection and get this judgment discharged.
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Thanks for the info. How high would my Bac have to be to be considered gross negligence? If i am not convicted of the Dui can I also be safe from being sued by this lady?
You will need to be cleared of the DUI, but otherwise, it would have to be reckless..at least more than 15 mph over the limit depending upon what the speed limit was.
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