They are going to get an Attachment of Earnings Order - what now?

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My husband has received a letter from the Bristol and Wests solicitors this morning saying that they are going to go to court to get an attachment of earnings order. It doesn't say when or what this entails at all. What should we do now? Can they use my income in any calculations? I know I've asked this before but when I went to see a solicitor she said they would take into account anything I earned even though the mortgage is not in my name and has nothing to do with me.

-- Kate (katesoper@supanet.com), October 11, 2001

Answers

Do Bristol & West have a judgement against you? If not, then they can't have an attachment of earnings.

If they do, then they could apply for one, however it would make sense to them to find out if your husband actually has any money to pay them. Usually an Oral Examination comes before any action so that the creditor can choose the best way to recover his money.

What happens with an Attachment of Earnings is that it won't be the B&W who decide how much your husband pays but a special AOE officer, who will take into account your husband's income, and his outgoings. As far as I'm aware its not your income which will be taken into consideration, but your contribution to the household. For example, if you pay rent of 500 per month and your contribution to that is 200, then your husband will claim 300 for rent. Once the AOE officer has all your details, they will set a limit for your "free" earnings. Again, as an example, if your outgoings each month come to 800 and your husband's income is say 1000, the AOE office might set the free limit to 900 - that means anything over 900 earnings the creditor can get a portion off, if you earn under 900 then they get nothing. The lender can't get at the money directly, its all done through the AOE offices. Currently, if your husband changes jobs, then the lender has to apply all over again, but it is my understanding that this is due to change and the AOE order will follow him.

There are several leaflets available from your local courthouse on AOE - with lots of FAQs - I strongly suggest you get them.

-- pendle (pendle_666@yahoo.co.uk), October 11, 2001.


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