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KnowYourRights, Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
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Experience:  Experience protecting consumers against unfair, deceptive, or fraudulent advertising, marketing and financial practices.
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Can a debt collector garnish wages for an old medical bill

Resolved Question:

Can a debt collector garnish wages for an old medical bill in the state of South Dakota?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  KnowYourRights replied 5 years ago.

Hi! I will be the professional that will be helping you today. I look forward to providing you with information to help solve your problem.

Prior to a debt collector garnishing your wages, they would first need to obtain a judgment against you. This is stated in the statute: 21-18-3.1. Garnishment of earnings prohibited prior to judgment. Garnishment of earnings may only be used following a final judgment in the principal action. If a judgment were to be obtained AND it was not being paid, then garnishment could be sought by the plaintiff. Of course, there are limitations to the amount they are able to obtain but it is possible, if they go through the legal process. Please
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