In order to garnish your wages, a creditor must obtain a judgment against you in court. Without a court order, a bill collector cannot garnish your wages for a consumer debt (the only exception is federally guaranteed student loan debts). For credit cards this means that the bank or bill collector must first sue you and then win in court to obtain a judgment. Once the creditor has a judgment against you, they can apply to the court for a writ of garnishment or a writ of continuing garnishment (sometimes called a continuing writ of garnishment). Once the writ is issued, the bank or bill collector must serve the writ on your employer. At that point your employer must withhold 25% of your disposable income until further order of the court. Without a judgment it is impossible for your wages to be garnished as a result of owing a credit card debt. So if there is no case, there can be no wage garnishment.
The only exception is for federally guaranteed student loans. While private student loans must still be reduced to judgment prior to garnishing, federally guaranteed student loans operate entirely differently. If you default on a federally guaranteed student loan, all the lender has to do to garnish your wages is write a letter to your employer informing them that your wages have been “administratively garnished.”