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Being Sued... advice please


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I am being sued by a CA/law firm on behalf of Citibank for defaulting on a credit card. Before the summons was issued I had already been contacted by mail by the CA and had sent them a validation letter. They responded with a letter stating they only had to verify and citing the Chaundry case to which I responded back with the Fields case stating that they must validate according to that case and the opinion letter.

So I received the summons and need to respond. My choices are to contact the attorney and try to settle, send the letter to the court and try to fight or bypass the CA and go directly back to the OC and try to settle with them.

The amount the CA cited me in the letter was the same amount that we get on the statement from the OC. I don't know if validation is still applicable in that case. So any advice is appreciated. I don't mind going any of the routes but if its just going to become a loss in court, I would rather negociate. Ideas? Advice?

Thanks

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They are always required to validate upon request, end of story. As for which route you should take that is a decision you must make. If your only defense is validation I don't think I would fight too hard here. Take them to small claims later. If you lose here you can end up paying their atorney fees, if you lose in small claims they cannot get attorney fees.

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They are always required to validate upon request, end of story. As for which route you should take that is a decision you must make. If your only defense is validation I don't think I would fight too hard here. Take them to small claims later. If you lose here you can end up paying their atorney fees, if you lose in small claims they cannot get attorney fees.

So is it better to negociate with the CA or go back to the OC? Since the OC has already charged off the amount would it make sense that I would get the better deal from them?

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Your best options would be to answer the complaint and then wait for the attorney to contact you with settlement options. Also Citibank's response to you while not complete validation will pass muster with most judges. Validation normally consists of copies of all account statements, opening information and other documents to prove they have the right person. They will need to send that Discovery to you upon request.

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Your best options would be to answer the complaint and then wait for the attorney to contact you with settlement options. Also Citibank's response to you while not complete validation will pass muster with most judges. Validation normally consists of copies of all account statements, opening information and other documents to prove they have the right person. They will need to send that Discovery to you upon request.

Ok. So is there some recommended format for answering the complaint? And when you say answering the "complaint" I am assuming you are talking about the summons, right? I have 20 days to answer that summons to the court.

Should I simply answer and then wait for contact from the CA or contact them directly? Sorry for all the questions. I really don't want to go to court because I don't think it will be favorable to my interests. I suppose that once answering the summons they will then set a court date and there is room for negociating at any point before the court date, correct?

Thanks for your help.

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Your best options would be to answer the complaint and then wait for the attorney to contact you with settlement options. Also Citibank's response to you while not complete validation will pass muster with most judges. Validation normally consists of copies of all account statements, opening information and other documents to prove they have the right person. They will need to send that Discovery to you upon request.

I am still learning how all this works. Sorry for the repitition. Are you saying that when I answer the complaint that the lawyer will contact me with settlement options? Or will he just take me to court and go for the whole amount plus his fees? I am willing to settle, if possible, but I fear that if I go to court I won't be successful in getting a judgement in my favor.

I may have one good thing going for me though. I live in Texas and the laws protect us against garnishing wages and repo's for revolving credit. Still, I don't want a judgement against me.

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Here's a couple of thoughts....

1. You must answer the summons, or they'll just show up in court and get a default judgement. Plan on going to court. Since they didn't provide you with proper validation, answer the summons by admitting your name and address, and answer all other questions with "...lacks sufficient knowledge to affirm or deny...". You need to make them prove they have the right person, the right account, the right amount, and the right to collect in your state. Just because you had a Citi account, and these people say they're collecting on it isn't enough proof.

2. You said Citi "charge off" the account. Does your credit report say "charged off / sold to another lender"? If so, then what your dealing with is a JDB who your really don't owe squat.

3. What might happen is you'll be contacted by the lawyer to make a deal. If so, you need to know who you're really dealing with. If its still Citi's account, that's one thing, but if its a JDB that another. Do some more research.

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Whether or not it was transferred as distressed debt can be determined by calling the CA or attorney. With Citibank that is highly unlikely. Typically after the complaint is answered the law office will offer a reduced settlement because for one it's usually not in their best interests to go to court either and they would rather settle and move on to the next case.

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Here's a couple of thoughts....

1. You must answer the summons, or they'll just show up in court and get a default judgement. Plan on going to court. Since they didn't provide you with proper validation, answer the summons by admitting your name and address, and answer all other questions with "...lacks sufficient knowledge to affirm or deny...". You need to make them prove they have the right person, the right account, the right amount, and the right to collect in your state. Just because you had a Citi account, and these people say they're collecting on it isn't enough proof.

2. You said Citi "charge off" the account. Does your credit report say "charged off / sold to another lender"? If so, then what your dealing with is a JDB who your really don't owe squat.

3. What might happen is you'll be contacted by the lawyer to make a deal. If so, you need to know who you're really dealing with. If its still Citi's account, that's one thing, but if its a JDB that another. Do some more research.

First of all, thank you very much. I am kind of freaked out on this whole law suit thing. I guess I figured they would leave me alone after the validation letters.

1. That sounds like a good response. I read the complaint and this lawyer is trying to state that I have continued to receive statements from the plantiff, which I have not for several months now. He is also stating that the plantiff has tried to contact me to work out a payment plan, but actually what happened is that they would call and we would refer them to the negociating company we had a contract with back then. That was a bad idea.... We have had no contact since we fired the negociating company. So I have a case there, I think.

2. The credit report says that it was charged off. I don't think they sold it to anyone. This CA has never stated that the debt was theres.

3. Citi was kind of sly in how they did this. They hired a texas lawyer since I am in texas. Guess they figured they would know the laws here better.

One last question. When I answer the questions do I need to type each one listed along with my response? They are numbered on the complaint and I don't have a soft copy. I suppose the format isn't as important as the content.

Anyway, thank you. This is very helpful.

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