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Reviewing employment history correctly can make the difference between recovery and expense. That’s because through the process, you may accurately discern whether wage garnishment is an appropriate tactic for recovery, should a relationship with a consumer reach that point.

For example, if a consumer has had multiple jobs, and that consumer has a habit of only staying at their jobs for short periods of time, the agency may make the determination that garnishment is the incorrect or less efficient path to take. But those with steady incomes over time who fit stringent compliance guidelines may have the means to fulfill their obligations.

In that case, the dilemma becomes not whether garnishment is appropriate, but which. If a consumer has multiple jobs, but has a track record of keeping each for longer periods of time, there are four criteria you need to examine to determine which place of employment (POE) should be garnished first to yield the maximum return:

  1. Active employment
    Check your existing records to see if your latest work on an account indicated the consumer as actively employed with a particular POE. Many agencies have made the costly mistake of contacting companies without noting whether the consumer in question was still on the payroll. Time spent waiting on that inaccurate communication is time that could be better spent on skip trace efforts. So you should start your prioritization efforts by checking that status first.
  2. Full-time vs. part-time employment
    A consumer may be actively employed by your noted POE, but their ability to pay is also impacted by their full-time or part-time status. Your employment records should indicate a consumer’s standing with their place of business in that regard – It’s the second status to consider when prioritizing garnishment sources.
  3. Verification
    How long has it been since you verified active and full-time or part-time employment? POEs that have been verified more recently should be prioritized over those showing older dates. Taking this step can also keep your data cleaner, since verifying status means reviewing account data to ensure its accuracy. You may find in doing so that seemingly profitable accounts showing active, full-time employment status are in fact neither.
  4. Salary
    Data regarding a consumer’s salary should be used as a last step to discern priority between POEs. Once you’ve verified active employment and sorted accounts based on full-time and part-time status, salary can be used to pinpoint which garnishment opportunities are most likely to yield the largest returns.

Remember, top garnishment priority should be given to those POEs who show active, full-time and verified status first, and high salary second. You’ll find greater efficiency by working accounts with an ability to pay over those that show high potential payment.


Disclaimer: Ontario Systems is a technology company and provides this blog article solely for general informational and marketing purposes. You should not rely on the content of this material for any other purpose or as specific guidance for your company. Ontario Systems’ advice, services, tools and products described herein do not guarantee compliance with any law or industry standard. You are ultimately responsible for your own company’s actions and compliance efforts. Because everyone’s situation is different, you must consult your own attorneys, accountants, and/or other advisors to obtain specific advice on your company’s compliance, legal, tax, regulatory and/or other business needs. Despite Ontario Systems’ efforts to provide current and up-to-date information, you need to recognize that the information contained herein may become outdated quickly and may contain errors and/or other inaccuracies. 

© 2015 Ontario Systems, LLC. All rights reserved. Information contained in this document is subject to change. Reproduction of this publication is not permitted without the express permission of Ontario Systems, LLC.

Posted by Beth Waters

Beth Waters, Product Manager for the Artiva RM™ enterprise product, researches market trends and collaborates with partners to help bring new solutions to the Artiva RM products. She works closely with the development team to execute the vision to the product. Beth has been with Ontario Systems® for 19 years, the past 10 in product management roles. She has been heavily involved with the design, development, and support of the Artiva RM product during that time.
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