Michigan income withholding order – How much can the court take?

Michigan income withholding order – How much can the court take? By:  Daniel Findling

When a Michigan divorce court or Michigan custody judge enters an Order for a party to pay alimony (spousal support) or child support, the payor is required to pay the money or suffer the consequences of enforcement.  The most common enforcement mechanism is an income withholding order.  An income withholding order is a type of garnishment where an employer is ordered to send a portion of the payor’s check to the Michigan Disbursement Unit to satisfy a support award.


However, divorce law in Michigan, alimony and support law in Michigan prevents a court from taking all of the payor’s pay check via an income withholding order.  This rule applies if the payor is in arrears hundreds or even tens of thousands of dollars.  The rule is governed by both the Federal garnishment statute.

The Federal garnishment statute applies to income withholding orders and is found in Title 15 of the Unites States Code Annotated Section 1673(2)(b)(2).  The Federal garnishment statute applies in Michigan child support and Michigan alimony cases and provides:

That that maximum part of the aggregate disposable earnings of an individual for any workweek which is subject to garnishment to enforce any order for the support of any person shall not exceed:

(a)  If you are married or supporting another dependent child – 50 percent of the individuals disposable earnings for that week and

(b)  If you are not married or supporting another dependent child – 60 percent of the individuals disposable earnings for that week.

So if the payor is married or supporting another child, the maximum portion of his/her check that can be garnished via an income withholding order is 50%, if he/she is not married or supporting another child, the maximum portion of the check that can be garnished via an income withholding order is 60%.

If you have any additional questions, comments or concerns, I encourage you to set up a free confidential consultation with one of our Michigan divorce attorneys.  The consultation is great first step to develop a plan and set goals.  We will answer all of your questions.  More importantly, you will leave with an action plan for success.

Change is rarely easy, sometimes complicated and often emotional. Our experienced family law lawyers and support group utilize a team approach to focus on solutions. We apply Michigan law and specialize in helping you focus on your goals, protect your property interests, manage your custody and support interest, and keep you happy. Our commitment is to solve problems at an affordable cost. We love to settle cases, but are not afraid to fight.

About Findling Lawdivorce and christmas

I have been exclusively practicing divorce and family law in Michigan for over two decades.  The attorneys at Findling Law all share the core value of practicing law to help people navigate change in their lives, without compromising principles.  We specialize in high socio-economic, high-profile and high-conflict cases, while also working with clients of all backgrounds. We recognize that the most important aspect of the practice of law is the application of the law to your specific circumstances.

That is why we provide more free information on divorce and family law than any other Michigan law firm. We want to help you manage your situation. Allow our exceptional legal team to help you navigate the change in your life, without compromising principles.

We want to help you manage your situation. Let our exceptional legal team help you . . .


Local: +1 (248) 399-3300 – toll free:   (877-YOUR FIRM)

After hours emergency?:  +1 (707) 968-7347

Or email me at:   Daniel@Findlinglaw.com

By:  Daniel Findling

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