09.15.14 |
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[Infographic] Garnishment: The Untold Story

Around the same time Charlie Chaplin made his film debut in a silent movie coincidentally titled “Making a Living” in 1914, many U.S. states established a process that allowed creditors to recover debts through employee pay seizures.  Chaplin went on to become one of the most celebrated figures in the history of American cinema while wage garnishments, the primary reasons for them and the impact they can have on both employees and employers, are still widely misunderstood.

That is, until now.

The ADP Research Institute® has released a first-of-its-kind study on current trends in U.S. wage garnishments .  The study, which analyzed aggregate, anonymous payroll data from 2013 comprised of 13 million employees age 16 and older, found that 7.2 percent of U.S. workers, or about 9.5 million individuals, have their wages garnished.  Roughly 1 million workers have multiple garnishments.

During the next week, ADP Compliance Insights will delve into the study’s key findings to highlight the top reasons for garnishments as well as garnishment rates by industry, geography, age, gender and compensation.

While the percentage of an employee’s wages that may be garnished varies depending on the type of debt they owe, many employees who experience wage garnishment can find it humiliating and stressful, often resulting in decreased workplace productivity and motivation.  Employers also face potential financial risk when their employees’ wages are garnished by becoming liable to creditors for an employee judgment if they do not assist with the garnishment appropriately.

Check back in the coming days for our next post, which will examine the top reasons for wage garnishments.  For a free copy of the ADP Research Institute white paper that outlines the study’s key findings, visit Garnishment: The Untold Story whitepaper or view the full infographic.



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For more insights and resources on wage garnishments functions, visit ADP’s website: www.ADP.com/WageGarnishments

2 comments on “[Infographic] Garnishment: The Untold Story”

  1. LuAnn McDaniels says:

    Which type of garnishment has seen the sharpest increase in recent years? Support, tax or other? I would assume support increases would incidate more divorces, while other may mean that there are still a lot of people who were hit by the great recession that are still trying to get back on their feet. Taxes, well, I’m not sure what that might indicate, but the reasons for the increases (ADP stated in the opening that garnishments are at an all-time high) could lend some light as to what is feeding the increase.

  2. James Woodall says:

    Very informative article. Would love to see more. By the grace of God I have never been garnished or even close. I notice creditors garnishments can not exceed 25 percent aggregate. This is a result of judicious fairness and reasoning with which I agree. I also note that tax and child support debts are not subject to the 25 percent. Why not? The same rules of reason apply. If you take 100 percent of a persons pay he or she has no incentive to go to work. Isn’t it time legislation is drafted to right this wrong?

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