How does an account attachment work?

The most important things at a glance:

Here you will find answers to the following questions:

In the case of an account attachment, affected consumers often lack the relevant information to be able to cope with the current situation. We support those affected by providing information on the subject of attachment and leaving no questions unanswered.

The attachment of an account is a means of foreclosure by means of a legally obtained resolution. The aim of the seizure is to settle outstanding debts that have not been paid after repeated payment reminders and reminders. The bank transfers the outstanding amount from the debtor's current account to the creditor.

There is no legal right to open a further current account as soon as one receives an attachment notice. This also applies to the opening of a garnishment protection account.

Garnishment protection account

A garnishment protection account (P account) is an account that protects a certain basic allowance against garnishment in the event of an account being garnished.
It serves to support the debtor's life. Your own current account is converted into a P account and is used for payment transactions.

Attention: Only one seizure protection account may be kept by one person

As an indebted account holder, a garnishment is only right in need if other liabilities can no longer be covered.

However, this can be avoided by acting quickly. There are ways to secure part of your own credit in your current account. However, this does not follow automatically.

After the attachment order has been served, it is important to set up a P-account. The attachment order must be duly served on the bank or savings bank and comes into force within four weeks . The bank informs about the measures of a garnishment. After this period, the outstanding claims will be collected from the debtor's account and sent to the obligee. Within the four weeks, the debtor is unable to make transfers or withdraw money. For this reason, it is very important to have the bank convert your checking account into a P-account in good time in order to avoid a complete seizure of the balance.

As soon as a garnishment and transfer decision is received from a creditor, you have 4 weeks to submit an application for a garnishment protection account. The process is always the same. The bank is legally obliged to convert the current account into a P-account within four days. It is important to act quickly in order to avoid subsequent problems such as bankruptcy or personal bankruptcy.

An application to convert a current account into a P account must be submitted to the bank independently in order to secure your money within the framework of the basic tax allowance. If the deadline expires, the entire amount of money is attached to the debtor's account and transferred to the creditor by the bank.

In order to secure the subsistence level, money and things that are needed in everyday life or to practice the profession cannot be seized. Only things that have already been paid for in full are considered attachable. Furthermore, nothing can be seized that can be shown to belong to another person living in the same household. A seizure of wedding rings is also illegal. An exchange attachment is legally possible. For example, an expensive item can be exchanged for a less valuable item. Luxury items can always be seized. The seizure of a PWK is often waived, as this opposite city falls under the point of "professional practice".

If the debtor has several incomes, these are added together.

If there is not enough credit in the account of the affected consumer to be able to settle the outstanding debts at once, the account will be permanently attached. The duration of the garnishment depends on how much credit is received in the debtor's account each month. The type of money received is not decisive here. For example, child benefit and social benefits that are paid into the debtor's account can also be collected if the tax exemption has not been increased.

If the debtor has already been able to settle the liabilities with money through a second bank account, the attachment of the account will be lifted upon presentation of a corresponding confirmation. In special cases, a seizure that is unjustified, for example, is declared invalid by the enforcement authority or a judge.

A garnishment itself cannot be lifted. This is only possible on the part of the creditor. An agreement on payment in installments would be possible, however, if the obligee agrees with the debtor.

Taking out a loan is almost impossible, since banks would normally refuse. From a purely legal point of view, it would still be possible, but additional securities must be provided, such as a perfect credit rating or no SCHUFA entry.

Find out more about the consequences of a negative SCHUFA entry here.

Attachment of an account is illegal if there is no valid enforcement order or attachment order. This means that if the creditor should err, wrongly apply for a seizure and want to confiscate money, even though the person believed guilty does not present any outstanding bills, this is considered unlawful.

In the event of an account attachment, no automatic protection of the subsistence level is guaranteed. To make an account and the existing money seizure-proof, the account must be converted into a P-account within the four-week period. Thereafter, a monthly allowance of € 1,178.59 is secured to secure the existence of the debtor concerned. The exemption can be freely used. In certain cases, this exemption can be increased by means of certificates from the responsible authorities.

Just like with seizure protection, you must act independently if you increase the exemption of the seized account. The following additional allowances can be requested:

  • Allowance for spouses
  • Allowance for children
  • Exemption for social benefits, such as Hartz IV or as part of a community of need, if there is no relationship. This can be the case, for example, with a blended family
  • Allowance to compensate for damage to body or health

You can find more information on the subject of tax exemptions here: P-Account: Calculate tax exemptions

Here you can open an account with attachment protection online within a few minutes , without a bank appointment.

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