Q: Is it wise to open a separate bank to avoid unpaid bills if a creditor attempts to put a freeze on your (spousal) account? I am in the midst of attempting to settle a debt with a creditor; I know it is a possibility for them to freeze my bank account; but I also know they are unable to garnish anything from it because it is a spousal account. I am wondering if it is wise for me to open another account and have our money moved to that account so we would be able to pay our bills in lieu of the process of them freezing/unfreezing the account?
A: Talk to a consumer attorney first. You need to determine if you even need to pay this debt or should pay this debt. If you have been dealing with a creditor collections person, you may have been misled and bluffed. No creditor can lien personal or real property or garnish wages without giving you notice of suit, suing you and getting a judgment. As far as opening the new account, it may be a logical short term strategy, but not for the long term. If there is a judgment, the creditor can find this account and you could commit fraud by moving accounts to avoid collection.