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What’s Your Plan? Garnishment Contingency Planning

Garnishment orders are some of the most time-sensitive documents an employer receives. A delayed garnishment response may not only create hardship for the employee, but the employer as well. The consequences can be severe, so what do you do when a widespread event delays your response?

In 2011/2012, FEMA declared 353 disasters and emergencies*, many of which interrupted or destroyed mail. It isn’t only natural disasters that may cause disruptions; government shutdowns and labor strikes may also impact order handling. These events can occur at federal, state, and local levels. All this substantiates why it is important to have a plan in place to address a situation should it occur.

Here are a few helpful hints to keep in mind:

  • Be Proactive – Consider what possible events could impact the locations from which your orders are sent. Where do you have the highest volume? What are the types of orders? How are they coming in?
  • Take Advantage of Technology – Sites like Twitter, Facebook, and mobile news flashes can keep you up to date with current events that could impact order delivery.
  • Impact – Consider what the impact of an event could be. Think about things such as how your mailroom will handle the volumes when normal activity resumes.
  • Document – Be sure to document everything. When the event started, where you learned of it, and who you have spoken with. This may help later should an issue arise.
  • Communicate -Keep your employees informed. This could reduce your workload as a proactive message could reduce the concerns of your garnishment population.

When disaster strikes, garnishments may not be the first order of business, but taking simple measures, such as those referenced above, could help you avoid penalties and other consequences associated with non compliant order responses.

Learn more about managing your garnishments with solutions from ADP.

*Based on FEMA data – http://www.fema.gov/disasters/grid/year


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