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Everything posted by BackFromTheDebt

  1. You can't force them to respond. It might be wise to also send a DV (if still within 30 days), just because they have to validate if they still want to continue to collect.
  2. As I mentioned a few pages ago, a few days ago there was another JAMS case with the same result. This was stuff we hadn't seen before, but it is no longer unheard of. Of course, if fees are awarded after a 3-judge panel, that could get very expensive. That might entice the OP to BK this out if possible. I am just stating the risks. MOST of the time either the OC will settle, or at worst the panel will simply award the $ owed without costs. I personally think that is a good gamble, since the most probably outcomes are substantially better than the status quo. However, lightning has struck twice, and may do so again. The OP needs to consider what to do if that happens.
  3. The stuff I said in an earlier post no longer applies. That dealt with them filing AFTER you filed in JAMS, not before.
  4. Actually, I think the OP would be better off with a complete de novo appeal. Look at it this way -- if the OP ONLY appeals the fees, then the OP has already lost the rest of the case. By doing everything all over, from scratch, the creditor is facing a huge bill, which often improves the bargaining power of the OP for settlements. What about this scenario: 1. File the appeal. 2. Make a settlement offer to the creditor, which will be less than the amount that was due. I have heard of cases in which the creditor was willing to make a decent settlement in-between the appeal and paying the first bill after the appeal. If #2 fails: 3. Wait until the hearing is scheduled and billed, but before the creditor pays the bill. THEN make the same settlement again. If #3 fails, 4. Be prepared for a good argument against fees being awarded in the appeal hearing. I have only heard of fees being awarded twice, and more likely than not, a 3-arbitrator panel will reject it. In any case, the OP is usually a lot better off than the current situation.
  5. Judgement proof means they can get a judgement, but cannot collect it. It means they cannot get your money or your property. In the US, that is usually for people who are too poor, or have found ways to put their money where it cannot be touched. That would depend on the Quebec laws.
  6. This happened again:,29606.msg295768.html#msg295768
  7. I don't know how similar laws in Quebec are to those in the United States. Even within the US, the laws of Louisiana are different from the rest of the country; based on the Napoleonic Code rather than English Common Law. Every American state has its own set of laws. I do know the debt collection laws are quite different between the US and the UK. If you were in the US, I would suggest you read up on making yourself judgment proof. Since you are in Canada, I would suggest you get a consultation with an attorney who can give you advice on the matter.
  8. If you have over half, there is a good chance you can settle. I would consider looking into arbitration, just as a way to convince them to settle. Sometimes that puts pressure on them to settle. I can think of several cases, including my own, in which Discover originally refused a settlement, but agreed to a settlement when the bills started piling up. YMMV. This doesn't work in every case. No strategy is the best one 100% of the time. It can take a while, too. In my case, and in other cases, the settlement came in between when the hearing was billed and when they paid the bill. There are usually several windows in which arbitration can gently nudge them to settle. If they won't settle now, you can often file an MTC, force them into arbitration, and keep them there until they settle. When I said I beat them, that means I offered a mutual walkaway, and they finally accepted when it got very expensive. Do NOT expect that to happen. As I mentioned earlier, that only worked because various lawyers really messed up their case earlier.
  9. There are occasional signed contracts, even these days, but that is SO 20th Century. As for the arbitration option, that is a possibility IF you go into it knowing you will lose. I only recommend that strategy for people in certain situations; 1. You can handle arbitration, perhaps with some coaching. 2. You need to buy some time to save up money for a settlement, or you are trying to use the expense of arbitration to force them into a better settlement, I beat Discover in arbitration, because some law firms along the way had messed things up really, really badly before it got to arbitration. For example, the case had gone from law firm to law firm, in one case going to a firm in a state I hadn't lived in during the time I had the card. We are talking about horrible skip tracing. Some other law firms dumped the case because they had lost to me in arbitration, or were new to arbitration and didn't want to deal with it. Finally, it went to a law firm where the attorney left the firm, and they found the case a few months before SOL. Except I could argue the SOL for the state for which the laws applied in the contract, which should be used in JAMS, had expired a couple of years before then. So it was a mess, and they weren't willing to spend all that money to try to argue that their own contract didn't apply. And, that was a long time ago, when everyone was trying to figure out arbitration, which is why some law firms dropped the case like a hot potato. I can't think of anyone else on hand who beat them. I got extremely lucky. So when someone who beat Discover in arbitration is telling you that it is impossible to beat them in arbitration, maybe you should listen.
  10. Settling with Discover is probably your best option. The question comes up about arbitration. IF you are able to handle arbitration, then that is SOMETIMES a better way to go only because SOMETIMES you can get a better settlement in arbitration than in court. Not always. Sometimes. If you are not comfortable with arbitration, then that isn't going to help you very much.
  11. Interesting. So this is determined by whether the CC agreement has an opt-out for arbitration?
  12. You got a bad arbitrator, simple as that. Courts rarely overturn the arbitrator's decision, even if it is a bad one. What happened is this arbitrator decided to go against the JAMS rules. When you appeal, the case is heard de novo. I have never done an appeal in JAMS. It looks like that is pretty much your only course of action here. You must appeal, or get stuck with a bad decision. Check the JAMS rules for appeals. Read it carefully, and follow the rules to the letter. It would probably be in your best interests to settle the case along the way, at some point during the appeal. But, even if you lose, you will probably just be stuck with the original debt.
  13. Yup. I agree with both of them. There is no way you are going to win this one. You can either settle, or else lose a judgment. If you settle, they will want everything all at once.
  14. We need a lot more information about the case to give you any advice. I checked the MCM web site. They say some people have been posing as MCM in order to get people to pay off fraudulent debts. No, seriously, this is happening. If this has happened to you, and you have the information, report it. The link tells you how. If you got a summons from MCM, the REAL Midland, you are most likely looking at a real debt. The question is, what are you going to do about it? For us to give you any more advice than that, we need information about the suit. Look through the forum, and you will find a form to fill out to ask for advice. Fill that out. You need to give the original creditor, the APPROXIMATE amount of the debt, the last payment, what state you are in, etc.
  15. I hope your health holds up well.
  16. Send them what you send to JAMS. If you are trying to keep them from accidentally suing you, a cover letter might make it less confusing for them. Couldn't hurt.
  17. Should they? No. Will they? Probably not, but they might. That would be a mistake on their part which could cost them. Make sure to send the JAMS complaint copy to their attorney. As for myself, I was once sued in small claims when I had already filed in JAMS. The law firm had the case dismissed w/o prejudice immediately, and not long after agreed to dismiss it with prejudice.
  18. There are some Californians here. Maybe they can help, but, you did not provide enough information. There are some forms you can find on this forum to ask advice. Such as, who is the plaintiff, who is the OC, what type of court, what amount are you being sued for, and what has happened in the case so far. Without that information, you cannot get the best possible advice.
  19. This seems a bit fishy. Simply put, this could be fraudulent. As @Harry Seaward said, he should check his bank account to see if he really did make this payment. Aside from that questionable payment, when is the last time it shows him making a payment?
  20. This reflects what I have seen. I had a case where we offered a JDB a PFD for an account in my wife's name, and this was getting close to SOL. The letter plainly stated that we would pay 100% for a delete, or pay nothing. No reply. It is past SOL now. We were able to get our mortgage anyway. The credit score difference between paying it off and not paying it off wasn't big enough to make it worth our while to pay them. So, quite seriously, they preferred to collect 0% on a debt with no PFD rather than 100% on a debt with a PFD. Go figure.
  21. This is a good explanation. Many of the CAs have monthly quotas. There may be a minimum amount for which they will settle, and you are more likely to get the minimum near the end of the month, when quotas must be met. Just like you are more likely to get a traffic or parking ticket near the end of the month. Also, the CA is more likely to contact the OC to allow for a lower settlement. Of course JDBs have a much bigger leeway for settlements.
  22. In some states it legally required, but many don't send one anyway.
  23. I will leave it to more knowledgeable people to debate the merits of your case. I don't have a clue on that matter. That is not the question. Assume for the sake of argument the case has merit. If you served Barclays properly, and they have not answered the case by the end of today, then go ahead and file for a default judgment on Monday. Monday is a week past the deadline. Judges will sometimes (not always) give some leeway for deadlines. Of course, any filing with the court should be sent to Barclay's as well. They may see the motion for default judgment and decide to answer and try to get the judge to allow the answer. If so, the judge may or may not allow that. Trying to predict the behavior of an unknown random federal judge is far beyond my limited psychic abilities.
  24. There is some debate as to whether or not a true addict can ever be cured, and there is a lot of debate as to whether addicts are treated properly in the US. Be that as it may, paying off a gambling debt might be a very strong reinforcement to stay the heck away from it.
  25. I agree with @Harry Seaward on this point. $20,000 debt may seem to be crushing debt, but if you are making more money that what you need to get by, it can be manageable. The default and fight/settle option might actually be cheaper than BK, and you might be able to keep more of your money. Attorneys make their money off of bankruptcy. To a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. It isn't bad to have the BK option as a last resort. That is what many of us, including me, have done. I just never had to use that option. Here is the single biggest argument against bankruptcy for a relatively small debt: You don't have a crystal ball. If you file for bankruptcy now, that can tie things up for a long time. If it is Ch 13, you have a 5 year (sometimes less) payment plan, PLUS all the money that goes to lawyers. If anything bad happens in the next 5 years, you cannot discharge the bankruptcy, and you are liable for the debts. Sad to say, most people fail in this. It might not be something bad. It could be kids who take up a lot of your money. The other side is Chapter 7. They may or may not be able to take the $15,000 from your wife, and they might make you sell one of your cars are replace it with a beater or a bicycle. That is over quickly, BUT, you can't file again for another 8 years. God forbid something bad happens to you or your wife and you wind up with some horrible medical bills, but those things happen. If you either work off your debt with a second job, which seems to be the way you are leaning now, or else default and settle/fight, you can get this taken care of in a couple of years. Your credit report will stink for 7+ years if you default. BUT, if something really unexpected happens and you have to declare bankruptcy on a rather large medical debt, you can. There is also the question as to whether working off your gambling debt with a second job would do more to convince you to stay away from gambling. I use to gamble a lot. Not what you would call a compulsive gambler, but I have seen people get into MUCH worse problems than yours. A friend of mine once found himself down $30,000 to Mafia bookies after the Sunday games, no cash on hand, and settlement day on Tuesday. He flipped a coin, used the results of the flip to determine his Monday Night Football bet. He put 30 dimes on the game, won, and broke even for the weekend. Had he lost, well, maybe he wouldn't have been around to tell me that story. Your situation is bad enough. Your wife may have saved you from getting into a situation like I described. Imagine being in that situation, and betting on the wrong team?