What is a frozen or blocked bank account?

Written by ciele edwards
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What is a frozen or blocked bank account?
You cannot use an account while it is frozen or blocked. (atm image by chrisharvey from Fotolia.com)

If you attempt to withdraw money from your bank account only to discover that you cannot, it might have been frozen or blocked. If so, you are unable to complete transactions.

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If a bank account has been frozen or blocked, the person who owns the account can't withdraw funds until the account is released.


Although money cannot be withdrawn from a blocked bank account, funds can still be deposited, either by the consumer or by direct deposit.


Bank accounts are often frozen or blocked by a creditor that has provided a court order requiring the bank to freeze the consumer's account. The creditor then withdraws the amount it is owed before the bank account is released.


If money in your account is immune from garnishment, you can notify the creditor's attorney of your income exemptions to have your account unfrozen. Unemployment benefits and Social Security checks are among the types of funds that in some cases cannot be frozen.


Any checks or debit transactions that hit your bank account while it is frozen will not go through. If you bank chooses to process these transactions, you are responsible for the resulting fees.

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