1. Who is the named plaintiff in the suit?
Velocity Investments, LLC
2. What is the name of the law firm handling the suit? (should be listed at the top of the complaint.)
Gurstel Law Firm, P.C.
3. How much are you being sued for?
4. Who is the original creditor? (if not the Plaintiff)
5. How do you know you are being sued? (You were served, right?)
Informed by my mother that service had been attempted on their house and left on the porch.
6. How were you served? (Mail, In person, Notice on door)
Service was in-person, rejected, and left on the porch.
7. Was the service legal as required by your state?
Probably not. The summons was served at my father's house (who shares a similar name, but with whom I do not reside), and was not accepted by anyone in the house. They left the summons on the porch which included details about the debt, with people who were probably not legally allowed to have the information about my debt revealed to them by the plaintiff. I have recently moved to the same county as my father (was out of state before that) and I'm assuming they merely mixed up our identities, but that's where I'm uncertain as to whether or not the service was legal (or even if that matters beyond an FDCA complaint or two if needed).
Process Service Requirements by State - Summons Complaint
8. What was your correspondence (if any) with the people suing you before you think you were being sued?
I had never heard of Gurstel Law Firm or Velocity Investments prior to seeing the summons.
9. What state and county do you live in?
Utah, Washington County
10. When is the last time you paid on this account? (looking to establish if you are outside of the statute of limitations)
Nowhere near outside the statute of limitations. Payment was last made on this account in June of 2017.
11. When did you open the account (looking to establish what card agreement may be applicable)?
This was an unsecured loan that was opened in August of 2014.
12. What is the SOL on the debt? To find out:
6 years as per current residence in Utah given it is a written contract.
Statute of Limitations on Debts
13. What is the status of your case? Suit served? Motions filed? You can find this by a) calling the court or b) looking it up online (many states have this information posted - when you find the online court site, search by case number or your name).
Unfortunately I couldn't get much out of the clerk. I know that a claim has been filed as I was provided a case number.
14. Have you disputed the debt with the credit bureaus (both the original creditor and the collection agency?)
This debt was, "Charged off as bad debt" in June 2017 and also shows, "Purchased by another lender." As of yet there are no collections reported to my TransUnion credit report.
15. Did you request debt validation before the suit was filed? Note: if you haven't sent a debt validation request before being sued, it likely won't help create FDCPA violations, but disputing after being sued could be useful to show the court that you dispute the debt ('account stated' vs. 'breach of contract').
I did not send a debt validation letter as my first contact with the plaintiff was the summons.
16. How long do you have to respond to the suit? (This should be in your paperwork). If you don't respond to the lawsuit notice you will lose automatically. In 99% of the cases, they will require you to answer the summons, and each point they are claiming. We need to know what the "charges" are. Please post what they are claiming. Did you receive an interrogatory (questionnaire) regarding the lawsuit?
I have about a week to file my answer to the complaint. It should be noted that my father has already sent a letter disputing this debt as the summons was served at his house using his name as well (our names are very similar, but legally not the same).
There are 6 claims made in the complaint (summarized):
1. That the plaintiff is the owner of multiple Prosper Funding, LLC accounts, including my account.
2. That I obtained credit from Prosper in August 2014
3. That I am a resident of Washington County, Utah, or signed the below-described transaction in said county (probably unimportant, but the contract was signed in Maryland)
4. That plaintiff's predecessor loaned me funds that I agreed to repay according to set terms and conditions in a written agreement.
5. That I have breached said written agreement which has defaulted, for $X amount
6. That plaintiff has been assigned all rights to the contract in question.
Unsurprisingly, the plaintiff is seeking award of the full sum claimed owed, their costs of Court, and other / further relief as the Court deems proper.
Here is an example of what the summons/complaint may look like: Sued by a Debt Collector - Learn How to Fight Debt Lawsuits
17. What evidence did they send with the summons? An affidavit? Statements from the OC? Contract? List anything else they attached as exhibits.
No evidence, exhibits, attachments, etc. were included in the summons. Only the complaint.
18. How did you find out about this site?
Google search while trying to research the law firm representing the plaintiff and potential attorneys that could help.
18. Read these two links:
✓ Using Arbitration To Defend A Debt Collection Lawsuit
✓ Sued by a Debt Collector - Learn How to Fight Debt Lawsuits
I've spent almost all night on reading through the posts on this forum once I realized the attorney options I found wouldn't actually save me anything (one attorney would have settled it for about $4k less than owed, but they were going to charge $4k in fees when it was all said and done 😂). I think there is a *very* strong case for arbitration to be compelled, but I wanted to ensure there weren't other defenses I should try to utilize first. I don't mind this going to arbitration if that is the best chance at a favorable outcome, but I wanted to check with more seasoned veterans to try and double-check that approach first.
At the end of the day I honestly don't mind a settlement agreement / repayment plan if needed. My main goals are to try to get this out of court, avoid garnishment, and keep my credit report as clean as I possibly can so that I can take out a VA mortgage again in a few years. TL;DR backstory is that I had a very nasty year+ long divorce/separation that has drained any and all financial resources and resulted in a foreclosed house back in August. I'm looking at a minimum of two years from August before I can get another home loan, but that is considerably faster than having to file a Chapter 13 bankruptcy (5-6 years faster). Ultimately I want to keep my credit report clean of collection attempts if at all possible, and I'd be willing to enter a settlement and pay-off plan for this debt if that can happen. I'm not in a place currently to be able to afford an attorney as I'm still paying thousands to my divorce lawyer as quickly as I can, but I can probably budget a decent amount each month towards repayments. However, if those who are more knowledgeable than I think there's a chance I can get this case discharged or dropped somehow by compelling arbitration I am more than willing to see that threat through to the very end and make them spend as much as necessary to get anything out of me.
Here are the most relevant phrases regarding arbitration from my copy of the contract from 2014:
My question is mainly regarding the administrator and arbitrator fees up to $1,000. If I can compel this to arbitration, do I get slammed with fees beyond that? The verbiage after that seems to protect me from their fees, but I can't quite interpret this part clearly.
Thank you to everyone who takes the time to read this and offer any insight, ideas, or suggestions to help me leverage and jockey for the best position possible regarding this debt. I've been able to pay off and/or settle all other debts that I have and am current on the few other debts that remain. This one is the one final debt I need to figure out how to handle and I'm honestly no sure how to approach it.