Is This Debt Collection Email I Got Even Real?


Dear Steve,

Not sure about this, I got this email and have no idea what it’s about can you help me.

“PAST DUE AMOUNT – 1080.00

This letter is to notify you that we have received a Summons of Garnishment on your wages. This means that someone you owe money to have been awarded a judgment by the court for payment of the debt. The court will order your Employer to deduct 25-30% percent of your disposable earnings and make a payment to the court on your behalf to recover your debt.

The attached garnishment order was [obtained by the United States, pursuant to the Federal Debt Collection Procedures Act, 28 U.S.C. § 3205, or the Mandatory Victims Restitution Act, 18 U.S.C. § 3613, or other Federal statute] I issued by our department. Pursuant to authority to attach or seize assets of noncustodial parents in financial institutions in the State of CO, 42 U.S.C. § 666]. Accordingly, the garnishee is hereby notified that the procedures established under 31CFR Part 212 for identifying and protecting Federal benefits deposited into accounts at financial institutions do not apply to this garnishment order The garnishee should comply with the terms of this order, including instructions for withholding and retaining any funds deposited into any account(s) covered by this order, pending further order.

Why am I receiving this notice?

We received a garnishment order from a court to [freeze/remove] funds in your account. The amount of the garnishment order was for $1423.13. We are sending you this notice to let you know what we have done in response to the garnishment order. You can contact your creditor for a settlement amount. We have been instructed to bring legal action against you as may be necessary, which may result in levies against your property or other assets after judgment. The file indicates that you have failed or refused to pay the above claim even though it appears just, owing, and correct. You are hereby further advised that if payment is not received within 15 days of the date of this letter, a suit in small claims court may be commenced against you forthwith and without further notice for the amount indicated above, together with prejudgment interest. Instead of small claims court, this matter may be referred to our attorney for suit in municipal court.

What is garnishment?

The United States, or a State Debt support enforcement agency, certifying its right to garnish your Federal benefits shall attach or include with a garnishment order the following Notice; Garnish wages owed to a Debtor after Small Claims Court has made an order that you owe money. Garnishment is a legal process that allows a creditor to remove funds from your [bank]/[credit union] account to satisfy a debt that you have not paid. In other words, if you owe money to a person or company, they can obtain a court order directing your Bank to take money out of your account to pay off your debt. If this happens, you cannot use that money in your account.

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What has happened to my account?

On, we researched your account and identified one or more Federal benefit payments deposited in the last 2 months. In most cases, Federal benefit payments are NOT protected from garnishment. As required by Federal regulations, therefore, we have established a “protected amount” of funds that will remain available to you and that will be [frozen/removed] from your account in response to the garnishment order.

You may contact the creditor that garnished your account and explain that additional funds are from You may also consult an attorney (lawyer) to help you prove to the creditor who garnished your account that additional funds are from Federal benefit payments and cannot be taken.

If you want to stop the garnishment deductions from your paycheck, you must obtain a release or go to the courthouse and pay the entire amount you owe. If you have any questions about the garnishment, you should contact the persons named on the included Summons of Garnishment by email.

This was the final time we are notifying you to take care of this debt if you failed to respond to us back then this case will be directly forwarded to the courthouse as well as to the credit bureaus and you will be blacklisted. We would look for your positive response if you want to avoid legal consequences and if not, then you can very well dispute this case in the courthouse. If you are found guilty in the courthouse, then you have to bear the entire cost of this lawsuit $4271. 15, which excludes loan amount, attorney’s fees, and the interest charges. You have the right to hire an attorney. If you do not have one, or if you cannot afford, then one will be appointed to you

As I am sure you are aware, if this matter goes to suit, all court costs, process server’s fees, sheriff’s fees, attorney fees were permitted, and other post judgment costs will be added to the amount that you already owe. You can avoid unnecessary inconvenience and added expenses of a lawsuit by making immediate payment to us.


Your positive reply will be greatly appreciated.


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Yours sincerely,
Investigation Officer.
Settlement Department”

What is this about because I have no idea what you’re talking about who is it I owe



Dear Angie,

This is an interesting email. It contains both some fact and some fiction.

Before you panic, I think there are some facts to check out. For example, the email talks about you having already been sued over an alleged debt. But have you? A call to your county court or online search for your name if they have a web portal can confirm if that is true.

The email does not identify what the alleged debt is for. Is it actually an account you owe? We don’t know.

Rather than dismissing it out of hand as a scam, it is possible this was actually a very poorly worded email by a collector.

So we need facts to prove this is fiction.

I would suggest the prudent thing to do would be to consult an attorney that is licensed in your state and pay them to help you either deal with the alleged debt or debunk it. Once you have engaged an attorney then the attorney will deal with communications with the collector.

One place to look for an attorney in your state is here.

Please post an update on what you decide to do in the comments below.


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Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
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