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Getting through the collections maze


Guest MoneyChallenge
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Guest MoneyChallenge

I need some advice. I ran into severe family and money problems about a year and a half ago. Teenage son getting into trouble meant he needed more attention and special expenses. Business climate for my business related to mortgages, went south fast. Had almost no income for a year and a half. Stopped paying anything on cards a year ago. Had 5 cards, and $16000 in debt. 8k on one Washington Mutual card and 8k on 4 Capital One cards.

Have no house, no assets of real value, a car worth about 3k and no assets other than checking account that once in a while has a few thousand dollars in it. I get paid commissions, no salary. Have started back in business and am just starting to make some money. All commissions, again no salary. Commissions come from several different companies.

I've basically been ignoring all communications from all creditors. All cards have been charged off and all calls are from various collections agencies. The latest attempt to contact me came from CIR Law Offices in San Diego, saying they're specialists in collections attempting to collect for their client Capital One.

My questions are: 1) How much risk is there in continuing to avoid all communication with CA's? 2) Is it better to take action with CA's before any of these accounts end up in court? 3) How likely is it that these accounts will be taken to court?

As mentioned above, total debt a year ago was $16000. With fees etc. probably around 20k now. Can't start paying these things off, don't have the money now. May have it in the future and would entertain settlement. My thoughts based on what I've read here on this site is that I might be able to settle for 25 or 30 cents on the dollar at some point.

I looked up CA SOL on this site, looks like it's 4 years. I've got one down now. What do you think the chances of going three more are without ending up in court?

Anyone have any ideas and or advice????????????

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1) How much risk is there in continuing to avoid all communication with CA's?

A lot. A judgment is not good.

2) Is it better to take action with CA's before any of these accounts end up in court?

Does this really need to be answered? Of course. If the court has to get involved for you to pay your bills, it doesn't look good.

3) How likely is it that these accounts will be taken to court?

From I what I see on this forum, very likely. Especially with cap 1. People have been sued for a lot less.

I would suggest contacting the CC companies and trying to get them to pull it back from collections and setting up a repayment plan. This would get the CA's off your report, and it would keep the court from having to get involved.

When it comes to credit repair and legal actions, hiding is not a very good solution. Just because you don't see the problem doesn't mean it's not there.

Good luck! :)

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You absolutely need to become reactive to your situation and take action. Do not avoid the collection agencies and creditors that contact you. However, you must be reasoned and informed in interacting with them. You need to read the stickies and DV flowchart on these forums (and the newbie primer). You need to respond to each and every dunning letter you get with a DV. You need to get a copy of your credit report and find out what's what - who still owns what, how much they are attempting to collect, etc. Where possible, contact the OCs. Don't talk to CAs by phone.

There is a lot to say about this in the way of advice, but the bottom line is, stop ignoring the situation. It will only get worse.

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