Debt is nothing new for most Americans, but an economic stimulus program that sends payments straight to consumers’ bank accounts with so few restrictions is. Such a direct response to the financial needs of working and retired people is only possible because their need is so dire. The interruption of business activities in almost every industry has left millions of Americans worrying about being able to afford basic necessities. Of course, individuals are not the only ones affected economically by the restrictions on social and commercial activity. The more businesses that can stay afloat, the fewer people who will lose their jobs and income, and the more easily the economy can recover when normal business operations resume. Almost all businesses operate, to some degree, on the promise of future payment. Your business might be able to collect more debts than you would guess during the COVID-19 shutdown. Working with an Alabama creditors’ rights attorney can help you pursue the debts that are still fair game and decide which ones to let go until after the coronavirus crisis passes.
The Coronavirus Stimulus Checks Are Mostly Debt-Proof, but Where Does That Leave Creditors?
The stimulus checks issued by the federal government to help American families cover their expenses during the coronavirus pandemic come with very few strings attached. You still get them if you owe money to the federal government, whether in the form of back taxes or past-due payments on federal student loans. Some outstanding financial obligations make it such that a person’s stimulus money can be redirected. For example, people who owe back child support will have their stimulus money sent to their ex-spouse before it ever gets to the original recipient’s bank account.
If the IRS can’t get its hands on people’s stimulus money, you might assume that private creditors don’t have access to it, either, but that is not always the case. The prevailing sentiment during the coronavirus crisis is that creditors are out of luck, at least temporarily. Landlords and mortgage lenders, among other creditors, are under orders to be patient with late or partial payments.
Garnishment Judgments and the Coronavirus Stimulus Program
If you have already obtained a court judgment that enables you to garnish a borrower’s bank account, you might be able to take funds from the stimulus check out of the borrower’s account, in accordance with the existing garnishment schedule. In other words, the stimulus program does not nullify garnishment orders.
If you do not yet have a garnishment order, though, it will be very difficult to get one in the coming months. Many courts have scaled back their operations. Evictions have completely gone on hold. You can expect a judge not to rule on your debt collection case until after the worst of the COVID-19 crisis has passed.
Let Us Help You Today
The coronavirus pandemic has upended the economy, but it has not made all financial obligations and agreements instantly disappear. Contact the Alabama creditors’ rights attorneys at Cloud Willis & Ellis for help.