We're in This, Together
Even though credit-card debt in unsecured, missed payments can result in severe consequences. In order to avoid a frozen bank account or other uncomfortable realities, you need a seasoned ally to navigate you through the legal maze. It's all about utilizing serious debt defense that can make the difference between winning or losing a case.
Perhaps, these questions leave you feeling fearful: 1) Has a lawsuit been filed against you by a debt collector? 2) Has the alleged 'balance due' dramatically increased due to fees, penalties and an extraordinary interest rate? 3) Have you had communication with the company that is suing? 4) Have you been served with a citation?
Circumstances in life can cause debt to spiral out of control – divorce, death of a spouse, medical bills, a job loss and other life-altering circumstances can result in sleepless nights – and it can happen to anyone!
You Need a Professional on Your Side
A creditor's lawsuit produces anxiety; but the good news is a lawsuit does not mean you will, necessarily, end up paying back the debt or be forced to file for bankruptcy. It is true that creditors have a slew of tactics they can use to retrieve outstanding debt; but restrictions regulate what creditors can and cannot do.
Debt Lawsuits Follow Procedures
Lawsuits for delinquent debt follow a predictable pattern:
*** The credit-card company, or debt collector, may choose to sue you.
*** A debt buyer might buy the outstanding credit-card debt from the original credit-card company. Here, the debt collector owns the debt and possesses the same legal rights as the original creditor.
*** The debt may be placed with a debt-collection attorney.
*** The debt-collection attorney's office can sue you in state court; and you could be legally culpable for the full amount of the debt, as stated in the creditor's lawsuit.
It is very important you respond to the court in a timely fashion or the plaintiff could be awarded a default judgment against you. If you fail to respond, the plaintiff wins the case without having to produce any evidence, whatsoever. One of the possible consequences of a default judgment against you would be garnished wages. In Texas, you may have as little as 14 days from the date of service to avoid a default judgment which would give the creditor everything being asked for.
Debt Defense – You Have Rights
When presented with a debt-related lawsuit, there are laws that protect you:
1. Statute of Limitations
With statue of limitations, the debt is old enough to have run its course, legally. If a statute of limitations applies in your case, any lawsuit would be considered null and void; and the creditor would not pursue any further legal action against you. Every state has its own statute of limitations guidelines.
2. Inability to prove ownership of the account
Particularly in debt buyer cases like Midland Funding or Portfolio Recovery, the creditors often sell these accounts in such large bundles that they cannot demonstrate that your particular account was in fact part of the deal.
3. Inability to authenticate documents
Again, more common in a debt buyer scenario, companies like Midland Funding and Portfiolio Recovery have difficulty authenticating the documents of the original creditor.
Potential Outcomes of a Debt-Related Lawsuit
Debt-related lawsuits can end in several ways:
1. A Dismissal of the Case
A court might dismiss your case, but you can be sued, again, in the future. A re-filing of the same lawsuit can be done by a creditor if errors are found to have contributed to the dismissal. To guarantee the plaintiff's inability to file another claim against you, I would request your case be regarded as 'with prejudice'. This would ensure a final dismissal.
2. A Ruling in Your Favor
A 'ruling in your favor' by the court is the ultimate win! The credit card company would no longer have any legal right to collect anything from you; and you would have the option to file for monetary compensation against the creditor.
3. An agreed settlement
Sometimes the parties can come to an agreement and payment schedule to resolve the issue without the necessity of trial.
4. A Ruling in Favor of the Credit Card Company
A ruling in favor of the credit card company would subject you to a judgment which would outline the debt amount you would be obligated to pay. Property liens, bank-account levies, property seizure and other remedies could be used by the creditor as payment of the owed debt.
Law Suits and Secured Debt
Secured debt relies on collateral which acts as security against default. Collateral can include vehicles, homes, business properties and equipment which could be forfeited in the event of nonpayment of a loan. Lenders can, also, recover money from the borrower to pay the lender's expenses used for property sales and the cost of their own attorney's fees.
I Am Here to Help
Though circumstances may feel overwhelming, I can become your ally and navigate you through the complex legal issues you would not want to face on your own. Creditors have aggressive lawyers on their side to fight for their rights; and so should you!
Call me, today, for a complimentary case assessment in any of these areas:
*** Defense from debt-buyer suits
*** Defense from original-creditor suits
*** Defense from loan-deficiency suits
I look forward to discussing your needs!
~Credit Card Lawsuit Defense & Bankruptcy Attorney~
~Your peace of mind is only a phone call away~