• synonyms


[gahr-nish-muh nt]
See more synonyms for garnishment on Thesaurus.com
  1. Law.
    1. a warning, served on a third party to hold, subject to the court's direction, money or property belonging to a debtor who is being sued by a creditor.
    2. a summons to a third party to appear in litigation pending between a creditor and debtor.
  2. adornment or decoration.
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Origin of garnishment

First recorded in 1540–50; garnish + -ment
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for garnishment

Historical Examples

  • Current wages for personal services are not subject to garnishment.

    How to Collect a Doctor Bill

    Frank P. Davis

  • Devil Marston will not let his news suffer for want of garnishment—and you will hear!

    The Man from Jericho

    Edwin Carlile Litsey

  • This evening he had spent his last rupee in buying sweetmeats as garnishment for the meal.

    Barclay of the Guides

    Herbert Strang

  • Where there was a garnishment given touching a plea of land, a writ of deceit is also maintainable.

  • Change the map into a steaming roast turkey by adding the lines to form the wing, the "drumstick," the garnishment and the plate.

British Dictionary definitions for garnishment


  1. the act of garnishing
  2. decoration or embellishment; garnish
  3. law
    1. a notice or warning
    2. obsoletea summons to court proceedings already in progress
    3. a notice warning a person holding money or property belonging to a debtor whose debt has been attached to hold such property until directed by the court to apply it
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for garnishment


1520s, from garnish + -ment.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper