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How do I proceed with my answer and appearance?


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I have jumped all around this site looking to prepare myself for a summons that was served to my wife in February. We were just married this last summer, but have been together with our 2 children for 10 years previously.

We do not share any joint acccounts and both have seperate credit cards. Our debt is near $20,000.00 and I realize we need to get rid of it all, but currently she works from home so she can be with the kids and I don't make enough to settle with what the CC companies and/or debt collectors want.

Which brings me to what is immediate and what needs to be taken care of now, the summons we received for her discover card. We received a privilege revokation letter from discover in sept of 2004 and the last payment made to them was July of 2004. In December they forwarded it to a lawyer in Connecticut (where we live) to persue litigation. We received the summons in the beginning of February from our local sheriff. The only date on the civil summons is a RETURN DATE field and it says March 15, 2005. So, from what I've gathered from the wealth of information here is that we must prepare an answer and an appearance for the lawyer and the court.

The lawyer, Christopher T Moylan, Esq. of the Law Offices of Howard Lee Schiff, P.C. sent us the summons with discover bank listed as the plaintiff and signed by Christopher. In addition, the complaint, a notice (?), a statement in demand, and THE PLAINTIFF CLAIMS: document were attached.

The complaint lists as follows:

1. On or before JANUARY 01, 2005 the defendant became indebted to the plaintiff in the sum of $5,474.01 for charges and/or cash advances incurred on defendant's credit account.

2. Despite demand, the balance of $5,474.01 remains wholly unpaid and the defendant has failed and continues to fail to make payment.

3. Provisions of the credit agreement between the parties provide for contractual interest on any unpaid balance.

4. Provisions of the credit agreement between the parties provide for a reasonable attorney's fee in the event that the defendant should default in payment and the matter proceed to litigation.

The notice(?) lists:

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN to the defendant that the plaitiff intends to seek satisfaction of any judgment rendered in plaintiff's favor in this action from any debt accruing to the defendant by reason of the defendant's personal services.


The amount, legal interest, or property in demand, exclusive of interest and costs, is greater than $3,500.00 but less than $15,000.00. The remedy sought is based upon an express or implied promise to pay a difinitive sum.

and the CLAIMS are:

1. Money damages;

2. Contractual Interest;

3. Attorney fees; and

4. Costs of suit.

I have NOT asked for a DV, is it too late to request this information? Would it even help our case?

Furthermore, we received a letter dated February 21st containing a STIPULATION OF JUDGMENT. It read:

It is hereby agreed between the parties that:

1. Judgment be entered for the Plaintiff in the amount of $5,474.01 plus court costs against the defendant(s). Post-judgment interest will accrue on any unpaid balance at the statutory rate.

2. Defendant(s) agree(s) to make payments of $200.00 per month commencing on or before MARCH 16, 2005 and continuing on the same day of each month thereafter until the judgment is paid in full. Payments shall be sent to Law Offices Howard Lee Schiff, and his address here.


By _


By _

I would like to settle for something I can afford like $500 a month for 6 months which would be a little over 50%. We are not homeowners and we rent, have utilities and 2 children. The only thing in her name is the car which is about halfway through the 6 year term. The majority of the credit card debt is under her name (maiden name actually), should we consider claiming bankruptcy for her?

I would appreciate any help someone could give me preparing an answer letter to the aforementioned complaint with the intention of a reasonable settlement before judgment.

Any other advise would be a lifesaver!

Thanks in advance,


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