How does one declare your bank account funds exempt?

by Ruth
(Laurie, MO)

My mother is 88 years old and is being sued by a debt collector for Walmart. My mother is not of competent mind and has no recollection of ever having had a Walmart card or owing the debt.

By the time I found out about this, it was too late to respond to the summons. I am sure the creditor will get a default judgment against her for a debt. Her only income is social security and a small pension. She has absolutely no assets of any worth.

She lives in a mobile home I bought her years ago and it is in my name. I have been told if they try and freeze her bank account these funds are exempt.

How do we make sure her bank account funds are declared as exempt?

Reply from

We are so sorry to hear of your mother's financial difficulties, and it's good you're trying to help protect her.

You raise a very good question here. There are new rules that help protect consumers from having their Social Security funds frozen. If your mother's Social Security checks are deposited into her account, and no other money is deposited, then technically she is supposed to be safe. But it's not foolproof.

We would recommend you go ahead and consult with a consumer law attorney to find out what you can do to stop this creditor from suing your mom and getting a judgment. (Or from collecting if they already have obtained a judgment.) Given what you are telling us about her financial situation and her inability to handle her financial affairs, the attorney may be able to get them to leave her alone.

You can search for a local consumer law attorney with experience in debt collection cases at

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