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Being sued for credit card debt


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pretty broad topic, got any more details? I'm not sure about loosing your home. Could you take your name off the title and put it in your moms? I'm not too shure but that may protect your asset. as far as what can happen in court...if they do get a judgment against you for the amount they could garnish your wages, etc...but as far as putting a lien on your home may take a bit more doing, you should check the laws of your state and see what the can/cant do, it's different in almost every state.

ching

[Edit by chingasaholo on Wednesday, May 7, 2003 @ 06:07 PM]

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What state are you in ? - needed to determine exemptions, among other things. In some states, liens cannot be placed for unsecured debts.

How much equity in the home ?

If you're 50/50 with your mother, your interest in the equity is only 50%, so that goes to the exemption limitations.

When was the last time you paid the original creditor ?

We do need more details about the debt before we can go further as to what you would do in court.

[Edit by LadynRed on Thursday, May 8, 2003 @ 08:20 AM]

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I live in Ohio. Equity is probably around $62,000. Last time I paid original creditor has to be 4 or 5 months ago. I am not sure. Is this really important? I can go through my cancelled checks if need be. The total amount is for $836.00.

I received papers from the plaintiff's attorney for requests for admissions. Do I have to fill these out and return? Looking at this again, I have been sent someone else's papers with mine.

Should I call this person and tell them I have their papers?

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Yes, its important, but if your last payment is that recent, then the SOL doesn't apply anyway.

As for equity, you'd best get a REAL good idea on what it is. OH only exempts $5000 in equity. So if its REALLY 60K+ and your interest is half that, then the property could be vulnerable.

Next question - how is the deed recorded ?? This is VERY important to protect the house. Per the state's exemptions:

Real or personal property used as residence to $5000

Property held as tenancy by the entirety may be exempt against debts owed by only one spouse

So, if the deed is recorded as tenancy in entirety, it should be protected from judgment.

You do have to file your Answer to their Complaint, yes. If you don't want an automatic default judgment, you need to deny at least some of the allegations on their Complaint. If you don't, they will win automatically.

As for the other person's papers, do NOT call that other person. They lawyer F'd up, big time with that mistake. This poor person is going to find out he has a judgment against him becuase HIS papers were served to YOU !!! You need to contact the atty that sent them in the first place.

[Edit by LadynRed on Thursday, May 8, 2003 @ 02:55 PM]

[Edit by LadynRed on Thursday, May 8, 2003 @ 02:57 PM]

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What if my payment went back futher than 4 or 5 months. How long before SOL would apply? What is SOL? Sorry, I am a newbie to this.

Can I send a letter of validation? I really do not know if the amount they say I owe is correct.

So would I deny the amount they say I owe on the papers they sent me, or would I just question it?

If I can send a letter of validation would I send it to the original creditor or the attorney representing them?

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NO, an unsecured claimant cannot force you into foreclosure, however they CAN in most states place a lien against the property so that when it's sold or refinanced the OC and the OC's lawyers get paid. Wage garnishments and bank accounts are probably the biggest problem and wage garnishments are easier to do. If however the debt was secured by the property as many people have done the past few years, then there could be a problem.

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SOL = statute of limitations - which is the time they have to sue you to enforce collection. The SOL clock starts ticking when you last paid and never again go the account current. If you're being sued, I'd venture a guess that its only gone to charge-off recently (180-days of non-payment). SOL for credit cards in OH is 4 years, so its a long way from expiring.

Yes, you can send validation to the lawyer who's suing you.

In your Answer to their Complaint, you deny as many allegations as you can. In your case, dispute the balance owed, since you question it anyway.

This website will help you with the Answer:

http://www.legalhelp.org/affirmative_diffense.htm

http://www.legalhelp.org/answering_complaint.htm

and

http://www.nwjustice.org/docs/205.html

[Edit by LadynRed on Friday, May 9, 2003 @ 10:33 AM]

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In regard to requesting validation from a lawyer who is suing, be aware that there are some real "greaseball" lawyers and law firms out there who will not respond to any attempts whatsoever to validate a debt. They often take great strides to get debtors into non compliance situations in order to win default judgments. One such example is the main firm out of New Jersey retained by DISCOVER BANK; Lyons, Doughty & Veldhuis, P.C. (Discover retaining "pit bulls" of course is no surprise!) Debtors in litigious situations should not hesitate to send correspondence to the court when it is believed lawyers are over stepping their bounds in civil procedure. So many suits are filed that they become routine and many lawyers are skilled at manipulating the judicial system including judges and so many defendants just give up in the process. If you end losing to a default judgment and odds are you will, be prepared for what may occur post-judgment. For example, is a bankruptcy plan in the offing? Can you move your liquid assets out of the country for safe keeping from creditor attorneys? (legal btw!) If you are employed, can you bust direct deposit and get paid some other way? These are just a few things to think about. In short, I work for some of these law firms and I unwittingly get to see first hand some of the tactics lawyers can get away with.

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ghacorp,

Thanks for your eye-opening observation. I wish I would have known how the "legal" system works before I got sued and stepped on.

Another "tactic" that I'd like to point out is a CA who does not communicate with an alleged debtor at all and instead files suit. What I've learned is that this is a great way to avoid the whole validation thing and speed things right along in court. After all, once you are sued, validation becomes a secondary issue.

[Edit by cybercrusader on Friday, May 9, 2003 @ 04:11 PM]

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This whole thing is new and upsetting to me.

Attorney sent me papers to fill out and return to him. This was pages of do I admit or deny questions. Along with this was a notorized copy of letter from creditor stating I did owe the amount they claim. Can I still deny the amount they say I owe? I would like to see it broken down as to purchases, interest and other fees. It also has a question that I personally made all purschases. I did not, as I let my daughter use my card. Would this even be worth adding? Attorneys papers say I have 28 days from April 24th to respond. Court papers say I have 30 days from the day I received summons to respond which was May 9th. Which date do I go by? Would my answer to the court be copies of what I send attorney?

Sorry for all the questions. But, thanks for all the advise.

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Discover Bank is known to file suit rather than go to collections first. Validation rules still apply because the law firm is a debt collector as well. Most of these law firms employ claims adjusters and will try to settle prior to the pre-trial conference. If you are unable to pay up and are perhaps considering bankruptcy, you can throw some curve balls, for example by writing the clerk of the court that there have been no statements and there has been no attempt to substantiate the debt the creditor and his lawyers are claiming. The nature of the legal game is to win a default judgment as quickly as possible and with the least amount of resistence. The courts know this and will often order a continuance after the poor old lawyers walk into court with a glee on their faces thinking they just dispositioned another case! (Normally you will receive Interrogatories that you must respond to be a certain date and if you fail to do so, the very next day the lawyer motions the court to appear for a default judgment. Writing letters to the clerk of the court helps create uncertainty which can ultimately buy a considerable amount of time before the creditor gets to clean out your bank account and do other nasty things.)

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