Recent and Upcoming Garnishment Law Changes

The following are changes to garnishment laws that employers should know.

Arizona:

If you are an Arizona employer used to receiving service of creditor garnishments by hand delivery, you may have been surprised to start to see these coming in the mail. Beginning March 22, 2019, Arizona law changed to allow creditor garnishments to be served on an employer by certified mail, return receipt requested, at:

  • The employer’s regular place of business;
  • The employer’s statutory agent’s place of business; or
  • Another location designated by the employer.

Orders served by certified mail are effective on the date of receipt. If you receive a garnishment by mail, you must file your answer within 30 days after the receipt date. Failing to file an answer to a garnishment on time may result in the entry of a default judgment against your organization for the full amount of the underlying judgment against the employee.

Colorado: 

This is your reminder that changes are coming to Colorado’s garnishment process for orders issued on or after October 1, 2020. The changes affect Writs of Continuing Garnishment. These are creditor garnishments for the recovery of consumer debts owed by your employees. If you are served with a Writ of Continuing Garnishment, you are obligated to deduct from the employee’s pay for a period of time to pay the debt.

The following chart summarizes the upcoming changes:

We have updated our garnishment FYIs and class materials to reflect these upcoming changes. However, Colorado has yet to issue updated garnishment forms. We will let you know when that happens and provide make those forms available to you.

Wyoming:

As a Wyoming employer, you should be aware that law now protects employee earnings from withholding on creditor garnishments based on when the earning were deposited in an employee’s bank or other financial institution. This change affects creditor garnishments issued on or after July 1, 2019. This change makes an employee’s disposable earnings exempt from withholding if they were deposited:

  • Within 20 calendar days before the garnishment order is served against the employee’s account;
  • On the day the garnishment order is served against the employee’s account; or
  • Within 10 business days after the order is served against the employee’s account.

This change confirms our thinking that employers are not expected to withhold from previously deposited earnings, but goes further to protect recently deposited and future earnings as well.

Utah:

No recent or upcoming changes.

Contact Employers Council with your questions about these recent and upcoming garnishment law changes.