COVID-19: PERSONAL FINANCE & EMPLOYMENT

FAQ: Dealing with Debt Collection

A debt collector or creditor has threatened to take me to court. What can I expect?


If you have already received a Summons and Complaint or other papers in a debt collection action in a N.Y. state court, the deadline to serve and file an answer (or otherwise respond) has been extended until August 5, 2020. Contact Nassau Suffolk Law Services to see if you are eligible for assistance from the Consumer Debt Unit. The form to “answer” or respond to the Summon and Complaint is available here.

Other deadlines in “non-essential” cases, like debt collection, have been adjourned until August 5 as well. Check with the court for more guidance about any new deadlines.

While most debt collection cases are in N.Y. state court, if you owe money to the federal government that case will be in Federal Court. Check with the court for more information about deadlines in those cases.

In the meantime, you can contact the collectors to request a payment plan or extension. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau offers many resources for contacting and negotiating with debt collection companies.




My income is currently being garnished because of old consumer or medical debt. Can I stop the deductions from my paycheck?


It may be possible to stop your pay from being garnished by filing an order to show cause. More information about options for vacating a wage garnishment order is available here. Contact Nassau Suffolk Law Services to see if you are eligible for assistance. Self-help forms are also available here.




I received a notice from the sheriff that they will start garnishing my income. What can I do?


Wage garnishment to pay private debt has not been suspended at this point. The usual process for garnishments can be found here.




My income is being garnished to pay federal student loans or taxes. Will I get any relief?


Yes. The seizure of tax refunds, the reduction of any other federal benefit payments, and other involuntary collection efforts to satisfy federally backed student loans or federal income taxes is suspended. Please see the New York Times article about the "F.A.Q. on Stimulus Checks, Unemployment and the Coronavirus Bill."





FAQ: Dealing with Debt Collection

A debt collector or creditor has threatened to take me to court. What can I expect?


If you have already received a Summons and Complaint or other papers in a debt collection action in a N.Y. state court, the deadline to serve and file an answer (or otherwise respond) has been extended until August 5, 2020. Contact Nassau Suffolk Law Services to see if you are eligible for assistance from the Consumer Debt Unit. The form to “answer” or respond to the Summon and Complaint is available here.

Other deadlines in “non-essential” cases, like debt collection, have been adjourned until August 5 as well. Check with the court for more guidance about any new deadlines.

While most debt collection cases are in N.Y. state court, if you owe money to the federal government that case will be in Federal Court. Check with the court for more information about deadlines in those cases.

In the meantime, you can contact the collectors to request a payment plan or extension. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau offers many resources for contacting and negotiating with debt collection companies.




My income is currently being garnished because of old consumer or medical debt. Can I stop the deductions from my paycheck?


It may be possible to stop your pay from being garnished by filing an order to show cause. More information about options for vacating a wage garnishment order is available here. Contact Nassau Suffolk Law Services to see if you are eligible for assistance. Self-help forms are also available here.




I received a notice from the sheriff that they will start garnishing my income. What can I do?


Wage garnishment to pay private debt has not been suspended at this point. The usual process for garnishments can be found here.




My income is being garnished to pay federal student loans or taxes. Will I get any relief?


Yes. The seizure of tax refunds, the reduction of any other federal benefit payments, and other involuntary collection efforts to satisfy federally backed student loans or federal income taxes is suspended. Please see the New York Times article about the "F.A.Q. on Stimulus Checks, Unemployment and the Coronavirus Bill."





Last updated July 28, 2020. The situation is changing rapidly. Please check back for updates.

We make every effort to keep referral information, legal educational materials, and related forms up-to-date. However, the situation is rapidly evolving and we do not maintain materials on external sites.  We cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information, nor are we responsible for any legal advice, information or assistance that you may obtain from external sources.  They are provided for general information only. 

This website is designed for general information only.  The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.