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BackFromTheDebt last won the day on August 6

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  1. This is very tricky. Just say something like “I elect arbitration for all matters with this account”. Thing is, they may just ignore that. At some point they will send it to an attorney. If you tell an attorney you elect arbitration, one of three things will happen, and they have all happened in my cases 1. They will ignore you and file suit anyway. 2. They won’t want to bother with you and will send the account back to the OC or JDB, who will send it to another attorney 3. They will give you a deadline of x days for you to file in arbitration, otherwise they will file in court. MOST of the time you can keep a case out of court by doing the following: A. After you hear from an attorney, send in your DV letter. That will buy you enough time to write up your arbitration file. Mention in the letter that you elect arbitration B. At some point they will probably reply. Not always. See #2 above. For one law firm the case sat in the bottom of a drawer for a year or so before they answered. C. After you hear back from them, either you have a deadline to file in arbitration or you don’t. If you have a deadline, file before the deadline and send a copy to the law firm. If they didn’t mention arbitration at all, that means they will file suit very soon unless they hear from you about settlement offers. In that case, file in arbitration immediately. Remember in step A you prepared for this. Send a copy to the attorney. NOTE: this does NOT work 100% of the time. Sometimes the case is sent to an attorney, and the attorney will Immediately file in court with no warning. They can legally do that.
  2. 1. You don’t request arbitration, you demand it. The way to do this is depends on how badly you want the case out of the courts. In one situation, the case was for my wife, and I desperately wanted it out of the courts, because I could act as her adviser in arbitration but not in the court. In that case I filed as soon as I first heard from the plaintiff’s attorney. 2. Does demanding arbitration keep the cases out of court? In another case, for which the SOL was almost over in my state but had passed in Delaware, I demanded arbitration with the attorney and they said they would sue unless I initiated arbitration within 30 days. I filed in JAMS. There was another case where I filed in JAMS but the law firm was confused and filed in court anyway. That went well for me. There were two other cases for which I demanded arbitration, but they sued anyway, and I took the case to arbitration after it was in court. I never lost in arbitration, even against the companies that almost always win, but my cases were special. In a nutshell, the only way to be mostly sure the case will not wind up in court is to keep in close contact, and make sure they know you demand arbitration, and make sure that as soon as it gets to a lawyer you immediately file in arbitration. This is especially true if the case has a small claims exemption. If you have already filed in arbitration before they file in small claims, it isn’t in small claims. I did this with a credit card with a small claims exemption. This was the card where they got confused and filed anyway, which was a big mistake on their part.
  3. I should add one more thing: Since the OP has multiple accounts in default, it would be a great time saver in the long run to be a bit more proactive about these other accounts. Meaning, it is a very good idea not to let them get into court at all. Having a judgment against you is very bad. Having a court record at all can cause a lesser degree of trouble. It takes at most a few hours a week, often less, to keep an eye on the other accounts. Remember, the goal is to keep the cases from ever getting to court, as long as possible. 1. When the accounts get to a CA or JDB, a DV letter buys a little time. 2. A triage needs to be done for these accounts. The three categories are: a. Accounts for which the creditors seem to be ignoring the account. This could be because they won’t validate. I walked away from over $80,000 in debts because they would never validate. Much rarer these days, but it still happens. b. Accounts for which there is an arbitration clause. The goal is to get these into arbitration before a suit is filed. c. Accounts which are being perused with no arbitration clause. The goal is to set up a payment plan or settlement before this gets into court.
  4. This is excellent advice. Some places make you go through extreme background checks before hiring. I have been in the situation in which I had to prove that I had no outstanding judgments against me before I could get a job. I even talked personally with Bob Hornick, one of the partners of the RSIEH law firm, and have him send confirmation that I didn’t owe his client any money. The Catch: You can’t get a job until you pay the judgment, and you can’t pay the judgment without a job. Being in an accelerated program leaves you with almost zero free time. Following the steps will take a few hours here and there. And you can very likely win, or at worst delay a judgment until after you have a job. You have to find a way to spend the handful of hours it will take to possibly save your career.
  5. A cease and desist letter may be a big mistake. At that point you are refusing contact with them. All they can do is either walk away or sue. They are likely to sue. If you have any hope of working with them to resolve the issue, that hope dies the minute you send a cease and desist letter. I have sent cease and desist letters in the past, but only when I knew I had nothing to fear from a lawsuit.
  6. The agreements are found on the CFPB web site
  7. I think that is the way throughout the state. At least in my county, which has the added benefit of having the most pro-consumer judges in the state. I once had a case heard by THE most consumer friendly Circuit Court judge in the state. I was happy with that case.
  8. Maybe there is. What I was thinking about was pre-emotive arbitration. You need to find some way to get this into arbitration before you are sued in small claims court. The easiest way is if there are violations. There are other ways. Usually the best time to start arbitration is right before they file suit I would suggest sending additional letters for both accounts saying you are electing arbitration for the claim and that the claim must be handled in arbitration. Add something to the effect that you are willing to work with them to get the matter into arbitration. See how they react to that.
  9. I want to add something. As @Clydesmom correctly pointed out, the FDCPA does NOT apply to Discover, because they are the original creditor. However, in SOME states there are state consumer laws which DO apply to the original creditor. (My state, for example). I don't know enough about the Rosenthal laws, or whatever the consumer laws are called in CA, to know if those laws apply to the OC. Maybe they do. You should look it up, or consult one of the California posters, about that. From experience, arbitration works better if you have violations against them, although this may or may not be too late for arbitration.
  10. They are required to validate the account they first notified you of recently. The one from mid-June they don’t have to, but might. Here is where it gets tricky. There is a small claims exemption for arbitration. Meaning if they sue in small claims court, which is what they normally do for amounts under $5k in Florida, you don’t get to use arbitration. One way around that is for you to start arbitration against them before they sue. That gets a. It tricky. The agreement says you can choose arbitration, but doesn’t say how to do it Next question — have they done anything which could possibly violate your rights under the FDCPA or FCRA?
  11. Is the rest of it (a) accurate and (b) what they claimed in the complaint? Judges will usually excuse a certain number of errors which are not relevant to a case.
  12. Take this one step at a time. You are in Florida. That puts you in a very tricky situation. You need to do things the right way. If you formulate the correct strategy now, your chances of winning are much better than if you wait. This is from someone who waited until it was too late and got socked in some situations, and was very proactive and won in others. And I did beat Citi cards on two accounts First step - how long ago was the first contact? Was it within the past 30 days? If so, send a DV letter right away. Just say “I dispute this alleged debt and demand verification”. That’s all. Short and simple. And send it certified mail, return receipt requested. If it has been over 30 days, it is too late. Second step. Get copies of the Citi card agreements online from the CFPB web site. Download the agreements. Read the arbitration clause, if any. The questions you need to answer: a. Is there an arbitration clause? b. Is there a small claims exemption to the arbitration clause? The Citi arbitration clause has changed since I dealt with Citi Others may know the answer, but don’t count on everyone else. Third step. Find out how much you allegedly owe on the accounts. Find out if these would be small claims or not. This would be important for your strategy. Get back to us soon for your next steps.
  13. Generally, they are pretty good about awarding arbitration in Wisconsin. Although in small claims, anything can happen. Which is why it is great that either party can appeal a small claims decision and have it heard de novo in Circuit Court
  14. Let me play Devil’s Advocate for a while and give the argument against filing separate JAMS cases. Of course, you should do whatever you feel comfortable doing. Midland will almost certainly walk away once the case is in arbitration. Filing one case is less work for you than filing two cases. If they walk away from two cases it doesn’t cost them any more money than walking away from one case.
  15. This is correct. In Wisconsin, you can answer a suit with a dispositive motion in lieu of an answer. You are not required to file an answer unless your motion is denied.