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Federal law authorizes the pay of federal civilian employees to be garnished for commercial obligations in accordance with state law. The term "commercial" obligations and garnishments do not include those for child support or alimony. Civilian employees are subject to garnishment for child support and alimony obligations under 42 U.S.C. 659.

The Hatch Act Amendments of 1993, enacted October 6, 1993, require the United States to honor garnishment orders or similar legal processes issued for the enforcement of commercial legal obligations of Federal civilian employees. The public law is codified at 5. U.S.C. 5520a and became effective on February 3, 1994. The enabling regulation is found at 5 C.F.R. 582.

State law directs the garnishment process. For questions regarding state law, we recommend that you consult a private attorney.