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New Judgement from Old Debt


impennypincher
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I had a student CC (not connected with the university) which I defaulted on about 10 years ago when I couldn't get a job after graduation. The SOL for the state where the university was located for CC is 3 years, in my home state, where my permanent address was at the time and I currently reside, is 5 years. I used my student post office box for the billing address. The account passed through several CAs over the next 4 years. I stopped hearing from CAs and a couple of years ago it dropped off my credit report. This year I heard from an asset recovery firm (a CA) demanding payment on the debt which had now grown to a considerable amount with interest of 10 years. I wrote the CA a letter stating it was a time barred debt and to make no further contact with me. Several months later, I got another letter from the same CA informing me that a judgement had been granted against me in small claims court for the jurisdiction limit of the court which was several thousand dollars. I called the clerk of the court and later went there in person. The court had granted a default judgement because the claimant's demand letter and summons were returned as undeliverable. The CA had the original address on the CC application, a student post office box, for both even though they had previously contacted me a month or so before filing at my current address. I did not receive any notification either from the court or the CA after the judgement until the time limit for appeal had passed. At the clerks office, I went through other filings by this same claimant, all against respondents with student post office addresses and old defaulted credit cards. I was able to contact some through the alumni directory and had the same experience I did.

Recently, the judgement and collection action appeared on my otherwise spotless CR. I was hoping to refinance my mortgage now that interest rates have bottomed out and are starting to go back up.

Do I have any choice but to pay these people? Even that won't remove the item from CR will it?

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No. I would file a motion to vacate. If you have definite proof they had your current address before filing, this could help you. Your reason would be for improper service, then the SOL would be the backup defense. Check your State's laws as you have a particular amount of time to do this. I have also heard that some people have filed beyond the limit and the judgment was vacated. So, even though the law says one thing, a Judge can change it. Next, I would contact your State's Attorney Generals Office to file a complaint. This is a definite violation of the law. It has been found that many CA's are doing this as most Magistrates have no idea what is and is not legal, therefore, many consumers are getting "screwed". Don't pay until you have researched all angles first.

Who is this CA anyway? If you don't want to say on here, send me a PM. I'll see what I can find on them.

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On the application which required a permanent physical address, I put down my parents address which was in another state. I was legally a resident there. I just used my student post office box as the billing address so I could pay the bill and not my parents. In all honesty, I don't remember where I signed application, whether it was at school or home.

My mom has continously lived at the permanent address I used on the application. After I graduated, I notified the OC of my change in billing address which has changed a couple of times since to keep my mom from getting bills. The standard "we have purchased this account" letter came to my current address. The demand letter and summons were sent to my old student post office box which hasn't been mine for 10 years. I got neither However, the CA remembered my current address once again after it got a default judgement.

The CA didn't notify me of the judgement until it was too late to appeal it. In going through the court papers, although the supporting documentation was on the CA letterhead, the plaintiff was an individual. I do not know for certain what his relationship was to the CA as when I called the CA they didn't have anyone by that name working there. At least, so they said. He isn't listed with the state bar as an attorney. I do know he must be pretty short as to the best of my research, he appears to live only in a box at the private mail box and shipping place whose address he used.

I think they used my old student post office box to assure I didn't get proper service and because if it used either my permanent address at the time or my current address, it would have been out of the juridiction of the court.

As this guy has done mass filings with the same court, I wrote the judge a letter reminding him of the SOL. I thought I would at least stop this guy from doing this to others. The judge sent me a reply indicating the SOL was only a valid defensive if the defendant was present to raise it.

The only possible good news is I have no property in that state and when they try to get an order in my present state, I may be able to contest it. It still is going to be on my credit record for 10 years.

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I think they used my old student post office box to assure I didn't get proper service and because if it used either my permanent address at the time or my current address, it would have been out of the juridiction of the court.

Time to litigate big time! In addition to filing a motion to vacate (take your pick - SOL, improper jurisidiction, not served), as best I can tell the attorneys for the collection agency have committed numerous ethical infractions and possibly fraud (felony). First I think you need to retain counsel - you should also contact the clerk of the court where the order for judgement was entered and see if you can determine who was the attorney of record for the plaintiff. Once you have that information, you can file complaints with the bar association in the state in which the attorney is licensed as wel as with the attorney general in the state in which the judgement was entered. Finally, by consulting with an attorney to determine which state statutes where broken during the process and sue the CA and its attorneys for actual damages - this goes way beyond a puny $1,000 FDCPA violation - didn't you mention something about trying to refinance your home? I bet a law suit seeking $150,000-$250,000 in actual damages would certainly get their attention!

Michael

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I would have to agree - sue these SOB's !! This "asset" company wouldn't be a$$-et Acceptance would it ?? They are well known for tactics like this, especially suits for time-barred debts and serving summons to old addresses even when they have a CURRENT address. That in itself is a huge violation of the laws and if you make your case strong enough with the facts included that motion to vacate, even if beyond the appeal period, would likely be granted.

Do you have any of the letters they sent to your current address that you received prior to the summons being served ?? If you do.. you've got thier butts in a sling right there !!

If you can't find a consumer protection attorney, go over to naca.net and see if you can find one there. I'd be willing to be one would be interested in this one - there's more than $1000 fine here. You might also want to contact Edelman, Combs, and Latturner at www.edcombs.com - they're after many collection agencies (see the Special tab on their site).

You've got a case here.. don't let them get away with it - if not for your own sake, for the sake of others who are still being victimized by their illegal tactics !

File a complaint with the FTC, your State's Atty General - this should not be ... and with other alumni also vicitims, you may have your own Class Action right there !!

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This appears to be the work of a resourceful debt buyer who was probably aware that if you were served by legal means that you would not be there to receive it or contest it. Notification of judgments is normally the responsibility of the court. Generally there would be thirty days to file an appeal. Unfortunately, what has happened here may neither be fraudulant or illegal so by all means spend the money to retain an attorney to determine if you have rights here. The ultimate solution may have to be settlement of some sort or a bankruptcy filing. SOL'S, notwithstanding, old debts never seem to die!

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You hit the CA name right on the head, except they don't hyphenate a$$-ET.

Yes, I do have have a letter from the CA to my current address from about a month before a suit filed in Small Claims, which is a division of the county's Municipal Court.

However, it is not clear who or what actually filed suit. The supporting paperwork that was filed (assignment of debt, etc.) has the CA's name all over it, but not the person who actually filed the suit. The court papers, which were just a couple of "fill in the blank"millionth generation photocopies of something that looked like it was originally typed by a 10 year old, do not mention the CA, but only the individual who filed the suit. He could be "Plaintiff or Agent for Plaintiff". This is just the designation on the form under his name. Neither was circled nor did there seem to be a requirement to do so. I KNOW this person is not licensed attorney in my state, the state the CA is in, nor the state where the suit was followed. This Small Claims Division makes a Judge Judy Show look like a session of the U.S. Supreme Court.

The Small Claims Division, by state statute, has restrictions on who can bring a claim. If either the plaintiff or respondent are represented by an attorney, the case has to be brought in regular Municipal Court, not the Small Claims Division. There are also some other requirements barring suits in the Small Claims Division by corporations or partnerships with more than five partners or shareholders. If the plaintiff is one of these entities, it must be represented by either a partner or an officer of the corporation. I have no way of verifying who this individual is. When I called the CA, they had no idea who this individual was. Neither did the bone-breaker from the CA who called after they got the judgement to demand payment. I was told I was under "Order of the Court" to disclose my assets and employment. I did neither as they only had a judgement and it was from another state.

I sent a CMRRR restricted delivery letter to the individual who filed the suit to both the address he used for his filing as well as the CA. Both came back as undeliverable.

I have enough money to settle the judgement, but I don't want this on my CR for the next 10 years. I am not even certain they would inform the court I paid it.

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I am in total agreement with the others. Follow Ladynred's advice. You need to submit all of your info to Edcombs. They will read it very closely and advise you what relief might be available to you. They may even go as far as representing you or referring you to one of their affiliates. Trust them entirely, especially if it involves A$$et. That "ADUB" is definitely on their list of "@#$%^".

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