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Lady Themis
Lady Themis, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 7751
Experience:  Wage disputes, workers comp, unemployment eligibility, etc.
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In the state of Missouri, how much are they allowed to garnish

Resolved Question:

In the state of Missouri, how much are they allowed to garnish from your check. I was told if you have dependants children living at home they can only take 10% from your check. Is that true?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Lady Themis replied 8 years ago.
Thank you for your question.

The maximum percentage of income for garnishment in Missouri is 25%. It is 10% if the individual is the "head of a family." The statute is:

525.030. Persons exempted from summons as garnishee, when--amount to be withheld from wages, how computed--earnings defined--penalty.
      1. No sheriff or other officer charged with the collection of money shall, prior to the return day of an execution or other process upon which the same may be made, be liable to be summoned as garnishee; nor shall any county collector, county treasurer or municipal corporation, or any officer thereof, or any administrator or executor of an estate, prior to an order of distribution, or for payment of legacies, or the allowance of a demand found to be due by his estate, be liable to be summoned as garnishee; nor shall any person be so charged by reason of his having drawn, accepted, made or endorsed any promissory note, bill of exchange, draft or other security, in its nature negotiable, unless it be shown at the hearing that such note, bill or other security was the property of the defendant when the garnishee was summoned, and continued so to be until it became due.

      2. The maximum part of the aggregate earnings of any individual for any workweek, after the deduction from those earnings of any amounts required by law to be withheld, which is subjected to garnishment may not exceed (a) twenty-five percentum, or, (b) the amount by which his aggregate earnings for that week, after the deduction from those earnings of any amounts required to be withheld by law, exceed thirty times the federal minimum hourly wage prescribed by section 6(a)(1) of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 in effect at the time the earnings are payable, or, (c) if the employee is the head of a family and a resident of this state, ten percentum, whichever is less.

      The restrictions on the maximum earnings subjected to garnishment do not apply in the case of any order of any court for the support of any person, any order of any court of bankruptcy under chapter XIII of the Bankruptcy Act or any debt due for any state or federal tax.

      For pay periods longer than one week, the provisions of subsection 2(a) and (c) of this section shall apply to the maximum earnings subjected to garnishment for all workweeks compensated, and under subsection 2(b) of this section, the "multiple" of the federal minimum hourly wage equivalent to that applicable to the earnings subject to garnishment for one week shall be represented by the following formula: The number of workweeks or fractions thereof (x) x 30 x the applicable federal minimum wage. For the purpose of this formula, a calendar month shall be considered to consist of 4 1/3 workweeks, a semimonthly period to consist of 2 1/6 weeks. The "multiple" for any other pay period longer than one week shall be computed in a manner consistent herewith.

      The restrictions on the maximum amount of earnings subjected to garnishment shall also be applicable to all proceedings involving the sequestration of wages of employees of all political subdivisions.

      The term "earnings" as used herein means compensation paid or payable for personal services, whether denominated as wages, salary, commission, bonus, or otherwise, and includes periodic payments pursuant to a pension or retirement program.

      3. In any proceeding of garnishment or sequestration of wages under the provisions of sections 525.010 to 525.480, the maximum part of the aggregate earnings of any individual in any workweek which shall be subject to garnishment or sequestration pursuant to the provisions of subsection 2 of this section shall be construed to constitute all wages or earnings of the defendant in the garnishee's possession or charge or to be owing by him to the defendant in that week.

      4. No notice, summons, or writ of garnishment, or sequestration of wages issued or served under sections 525.010 to 525.480 shall attach or purport to attach any wages in excess of the amounts prescribed in subsection 2 of this section and each such notice, summons, or writ shall have clearly and legibly reproduced thereon the provisions of subsections 2, 5 and 6 of this section.

      5. No employer may discharge any employee by reason of the fact that his earnings have been subjected to garnishment or sequestration for any one indebtedness.

      6. Whoever willfully violates the provisions of subsection 5 of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor.

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