Whoever is in debt will not be able to withdraw their FGTS balance? Understand!

The FGTS balance is an important payment for formal workers. See if default will prevent withdrawal!

Have you ever imagined using your FGTS balance to pay off debts? This possibility, which seemed distant, began to take shape in recent decisions by the Brazilian justice system.

Many people, however, are afraid of the possibility of not being able to access the benefit if their name is in the red. Understand if this is really an impediment!

Many people who have outstanding debts are afraid of not being able to withdraw their FGTS balance. Check out! / Credit: @jeanedeoliveirafotografia / pronatec.pro.br

What is the FGTS balance?

In principle, the balance of the FGTS, or Service Time Guarantee Fund, is a reserve of money formed by monthly deposits made by employers on behalf of their employees.

This fund works as a type of forced savings, whose amounts are deposited in accounts at Caixa Econômica Federal.

The FGTS, therefore, is intended to protect workers in cases of unfair dismissal, retirement, serious illnesses, and other situations specified by law.

The amount deposited corresponds to 8% of the employee’s salary and is not deducted from their salary, being an obligation of the employer.

Who is entitled to the Guarantee Fund?

Furthermore, all workers governed by the CLT (Consolidation of Labor Laws) are entitled to the FGTS, including rural workers, temporary workers, casual workers, safreros (rural workers who work only during the harvest period) and professional athletes.

In addition, public servants and domestic workers are also entitled to the FGTS, as long as they are properly registered.

In short, the fund is a guarantee for the worker, access to which is permitted subject to specific conditions established by current legislation.

Can I withdraw the FGTS balance even in the red?

In 2023, the STJ had already relaxed the rules on salary unseizability, and now, in 2024, a judge in Belo Horizonte authorized the seizure of 20% of a debtor’s FGTS balance to pay a debt.

This decision represents a significant moment, as until then the FGTS balance was considered practically untouchable, except in very specific situations. The fund, seen as a salary fund, had protection against seizures, aiming at the worker’s financial security.

However, the decision by judge Ana Cristina Viegas sets an important precedent, showing that, in certain circumstances, the FGTS balance can indeed be used to pay off debts.

Find out more: See how to RECOVER your FGTS, if the company has not deposited it

What are the process conditions?

Now, for the seizure of the FGTS balance to occur, some conditions must be met.

Firstly, it is necessary that the debtor does not have other assets subject to seizure. Furthermore, the block only applies to the balance already available in the FGTS account, and does not affect direct withdrawals by the worker.

This procedure follows a specific order established by the Civil Procedure Code, being considered a last alternative after all other attempts to recover the credit have failed.

What about the birthday loot?

Another point of attention is the FGTS birthday withdrawal modality, which may also enter the creditors’ radar as a way to satisfy debts.

However, the effectiveness of this option is less, given that a court order is necessary for seizure to occur, and withdrawals follow a schedule pre-established by the government.

Considerations about the FGTS balance

Finally, these court decisions may signal the beginning of a trend where, increasingly, the FGTS balance may become a target in credit recovery processes.

This movement raises an important debate about the balance between the protection of labor funds and the effectiveness of debt recovery.

See more: List REVEALS all workers who are eligible to withdraw FGTS next week

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