irismagnolia

Going to GA Magistrate Court, How to Craft Pro Se Defense

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In February, I was served by a Sheriff's Deputy who presented me with a document from the Magistrate Court of Cobb County GA that said that Midland Funding LLC, Assignee of Citibank, N.A. that stated that they intended to sue me for $3,000 plus $74.50 court costs as of that date and all future costs of the suit. The attorney listed was Dennis Henry of Frederick J. Hanna and Associates, a so-called law firm/junk debt collector that has been discussed on many discussion boards in terms of their questionable collection practices.

Because they didn't provide any information in terms of account information (I've had several accounts with Citibank in the past and I know my husband is paying on one that was in my name with Home Depot that he used was issued through Citibank), when the account was opened, etc., I filed my formal answer denying the debt and stating that the plantiff had refused to verify alleged debt and was in violation of the FDCPA. I also submitted a request for production of documents and a request for admissions and had these documents notarized and sent certified return receipt to both the Attorney's Office and the Magistrate Court within the 30 day response window.

The attorney's office responded back with a letter asking for the opportunity to discuss the case in further detail and explore payment arrangements and sent another letter on the same day saying that pursuant to Uniform Magistrate Rule 40 discovery requests are not only disfavored by the courts but are also considered a nullity when filed without leave of court.

I received notification from the court that my court date is on May 3. My question is how should I craft my defense? I've been unemployed since September 2008 due to a layoff and inability to land another job and admittedly, most of my credit cards have taken a backseat to being able to keep a roof over my family's head and food on the table through my husband's income. Should I make a Motion for Dismissal due to the law firm's failure to answer my requests for production of documents and admissions? What if they bring the requested documentation to court instead? If after going to court, the judge decides in Midland's favor, should I wait to file bankruptcy then or should I do this before I go to court? Should I leave my checkbook at home in case they try to garnish my wages (which is unemployment)?

Any advice is greatly appreciated.

Edited by irismagnolia
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