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Do not abandon all hope all ye who enter here


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This is just a simple message to people who's lives have just been turned upside down by a summons. Unless you are Coltfan, you are probably scared. You probably feel like your feet have been nailed to the train tracks, and all you can do to stop the mass of steel and diesel engines barreling towards you is to feebly hold your arms up in front of you.

But, a lot of people on here seem to be winning their cases lately. They are winning because they overcame the fear and decided to fight tooth and nail. They looked at the mass of rules and procedures that they have to follow and decided to get to it as best as they could. Have some people lost? Sure, but they were able to keep some semblance of dignity by not just rolling over and taking it. Court is scary because it is complicated and there are real consequences, but these people have held their heads high and vowed not to go down without a fight.

I just want you to know, it is possible to win and it is possible to get your sanity back. I truly enjoy reading the threads where people let us know that they won, whether I contributed to that win or not.

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As one of the recent winners, I'd also like to add that you are not much worse off by going to court and losing than you would be by rolling over and accepting a summary judgement.

With a court trial, you give yourself a chance to win and the possibility of losing. But accepting a summary judgement guarantees it...

Edited by First Timer
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This is just a simple message to people who's lives have just been turned upside down by a summons. Unless you are Coltfan, you are probably scared. You probably feel like your feet have been nailed to the train tracks, and all you can do to stop the mass of steel and diesel engines barreling towards you is to feebly hold your arms up in front of you.

But, a lot of people on here seem to be winning their cases lately. They are winning because they overcame the fear and decided to fight tooth and nail. They looked at the mass of rules and procedures that they have to follow and decided to get to it as best as they could. Have some people lost? Sure, but they were able to keep some semblance of dignity by not just rolling over and taking it. Court is scary because it is complicated and there are real consequences, but these people have held their heads high and vowed not to go down without a fight.

I just want you to know, it is possible to win and it is possible to get your sanity back. I truly enjoy reading the threads where people let us know that they won, whether I contributed to that win or not.

You are 100% correct. And every time one of you goes to trial and exposes BS "evidence" proffered by a JDB, it makes it just that much easier for the next one.

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If someone came a snatched the food out of your baby's mouth they would get a beat down.

Here is a place to learn to legally fight. You can overcome your fear in all things by nowing that they/it can only hurt you if you let it.

Fear of court is fear of the unknown. you can overcome this by taking that step and dealing with what's around the corner.

here we can help so come here listen and learn and be prepared, bolstered, and most of all supported. Don't let them bully you. Strap on your armor and get to swingin. we will help.

"Fear, that's the other guys problem." Dan Akroyd Trading places

Edited by Seadragon
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This is just a simple message to people who's lives have just been turned upside down by a summons. Unless you are Coltfan, you are probably scared.

But the only reason I'm not scared or intimidated today is because I fought back after I felt just as you described in this thread, many years ago. I saw first hand, in court, how 95% of the other sides strategy is bluffing, intimidation and basically playing the school yard bully.

I'm sure there might be a very small % out there, but who really says, "Hey I think for no reason at all I'm just going to stop paying all my credit card bills. Life is good, I have plenty, but I'm just tired of paying my bills, so screw you creditors." There is usually a very valid underlying reason why we got into this position and we don't need some scavenger (JDB) flying in and trying to peck our eyes out when we are barely holding on.

They can justify it all they want, but paying a two cents on the dollar for a debt that was 1K and three years later trying to collect 5K and not giving a flip about anybody is just wrong. It's legal to try, I'll concede that. However, it's just as legal to fight back and not just grab your ankles and say, "thank you may I have another."

I also love reading the success stories that seem to be more and more numerous every time I sign on. I also love seeing those that have won sticking around and giving advice and encouragement to others.

Edited by Coltfan1972
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I believe that researching, learning and standing up to an OC or JDB can have a positive effect in other areas of one's life. My ordeals not only helped me to realize that I have a few more brain cells than I thought I had, but they made me a stronger person who's no longer afraid to stand up for myself in any situation. They also made me more sympathetic to those who are experiencing financial difficulties.

I hope others who come here gain self confidence as well as knowledge. Hopefully, whether here or in some other way, they'll "pay it forward".

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I believe that researching, learning and standing up to an OC or JDB can have a positive effect in other areas of one's life. My ordeals not only helped me to realize that I have a few more brain cells than I thought I had, but they made me a stronger person who's no longer afraid to stand up for myself in any situation. They also made me more sympathetic to those who are experiencing financial difficulties.

I hope others who come here gain self confidence as well as knowledge. Hopefully, whether here or in some other way, they'll "pay it forward".

I think many of the replies to this thread are from people from whom I've learned something or helped me along the way. For that, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

It's a kind of economic terrorism; a very sloppy "spaghetti wall" approach/attitude these businesses take.

It's purely numbers. Once I got over thinking that the lawsuits and crappy credit was "just something that happened to me" and realized that no, "this is what happens to as many people as possible because the JDB is only buying an Excel spreadsheet with as many rows of information as possible," I felt a lot better about fighting back. After all, I think the main reason these newb/crap attorneys are so shocked to see someone in court putting up ANY defense is because... in their line of work, no one ever expects that name from the spreadsheet to actually show up in person.

You are a person with rights to due process. You're not a line in a spreadsheet or a doormat.

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This is just a simple message to people who's lives have just been turned upside down by a summons. Unless you are Coltfan, you are probably scared. You probably feel like your feet have been nailed to the train tracks, and all you can do to stop the mass of steel and diesel engines barreling towards you is to feebly hold your arms up in front of you.

But, a lot of people on here seem to be winning their cases lately. They are winning because they overcame the fear and decided to fight tooth and nail. They looked at the mass of rules and procedures that they have to follow and decided to get to it as best as they could. Have some people lost? Sure, but they were able to keep some semblance of dignity by not just rolling over and taking it. Court is scary because it is complicated and there are real consequences, but these people have held their heads high and vowed not to go down without a fight.

I just want you to know, it is possible to win and it is possible to get your sanity back. I truly enjoy reading the threads where people let us know that they won, whether I contributed to that win or not.

If I may piggyback on usagi's great post...

Please don't do anything out of desperation.

For example DON'T file for bankruptcy, hire the first attorney you call (or that contacts you), show up for a hearing and share all your saddest financial stories (in hopes the judge dismisses the case because you lack the means to pay), etc. Beware of those that prey on desperation.

I mention this as I know (at least here in socal) there are attorneys that target those sued on collection cases. They claim they want to represent you. But these type of firms (generally) will NOT seek a dismissal on your behalf. They usually know nothing about collection laws, nor junk debt buyers and their tricks (though there are exceptions, I'm sure). They simply want a percentage of your settlement (that they will negotiate for you). We got a couple of letters from firms like that. :roll:

We were also contacted by a bankruptcy firm. They know you are scared, and want to make the situation go away--fast. Their solution is a "low cost" bankruptcy. :rolleyes:

I learned on this forum, bankruptcy frequently makes your life worse (before better), and is unnecessary depending upon how much (or little) debt you actually have.

Edited by tigger
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I really appreciate this thread! I found this forum just last week and already feel so much better regarding my chances to fight back. I'd been burying my head in the sand and feeling extrememly guilty about not paying my debts (all stemming from a very difficult time - husband out of the country, both laid off, home foreclosure, blah, blah, blah - but now I am beginning to understand the process thanks to you all!

The JDB use illegal tactics and would do anything to get their money. They don't care if a person has food or shelter and will intimidate you into feeling like you have zero options.

One of the collection agencies even called my job and threated our Director of HR to serve me at work! It was horrible and embarrassing - I'm fed up and hope I will find a lot of assistance as I wage my battle against these bullies.

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Bankruptcy can also b a poison pill, as we saw recently from a poster who filed, then got a $40,000.00 bill from her lawyer. It doesn't always go smoothly. Creditors can apparently object to being left in the dust, and this can run up a sizeable legal bill. From what I've seen, most posters come here when they have been served. They have no clue as to how the system works, and there is not enough time in all cases to get them up to speed. Several of them have just disappeared, probably to get a judgment against them.

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At the beginning of 2010, I was served with a summons on a credit card that we could not afford to pay...my wife started calling bankruptcy attorneys and was given bad advice, so I got slammed with a Summary Judgement for $24k. Further, they got a wage garnishment, property lien...etc..I decided to fight post-judgment, made the attorney's life miserable..so I got them to settle the account for $.30 on the dollar. I paid it in one lump sum and got the release from the court.

Then later on that year, I was served with another summons for another credit card for $25k..Chase Bank..Going through the first one, I learned all of the mistakes I made, I read the rules of civil procedure and fought hard against Chase Bank's attorney...Which was hired through Fredrick Hanna & Associates...That suit was dismissed with prejudice...The attorneys for Chase were just trying to wear me down and would bully me into agreeing that it was my debt..which I would not do. That account is also off of my credit report.

Both of the above accounts were primarily used to pay for my wedding...My wife used the card without my knowledge to pay for wedding expenses that she should have paid out of her own pocket, which made the debt even worse.

My wife had a significant amount of debt that she did not disclose to me when we got married, I found out when credit card statements would come in the mail. She also accrued some medical debt for a health issue.

A diagnostic company sued her for a CAT scan she had done that insurance did not pick up. I told her exactly what to do and she would not listen and decided to try things on her own..and got stuck with a $2,000 judgment.

Then recently she was sued on an old retail charge card..she decided to let me help and listened to me..and of course she made a bunch of mistakes at first when she threw up the I am garnishment proof, but then she started doing exactly what I told her..the day of trial, she decided to settle though for $.20 on the dollar.

As a result, you get the residual effects of everything, collection agencies calling, credit scores get hit and you lose sleep and are stressed. I decided to completely fight the collection agencies and get them on FDCPA violations. Everytime I would sue a CA, part of the agreement was for the CA or JDB to eliminate the debt. I have made $5k off of CAs and JDBs.

Now, I am debt free outside of my mortgage and have built back up a decent cash reserve...still not like what it was once before, but it is a decent cushin. Now, this year I will be filing for divorce to get away from a wife that cannot control her spending habits and blows through money like it is water.

Now in my late 30s..I am still young enough to recover and I am thinking of going to law school.

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Now in my late 30s..I am still young enough to recover and I am thinking of going to law school.

I'm taking the LSAT in a couple of weeks. Even if I go to law school and decide not to specialize in consumer protection, I will take debt cases pro bono. There are those that just barely don't qualify for legal aid, yet still cannot afford an attorney who get slammed. That's not justice.

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I, myself 4 years ago with perfect credit score and an absolutely perfect payment history (but with a ton of debt from previous bad spending habits in addition to a complete loss house uninsured house fire) began to get slammed with credit line decreases and interest rate hikes (in some cases quadruple). This made it for all practical purposes impossible for me to pay off my debt amnt.

I began researching here the consequences of defaulting on debt, debt settlement and bankruptcy back in around 08-09. Upon finding out I was in one of the few garnishment states I realized I was in a pretty good position for settlement. I looked into bankruptcy but I had a few assets that did not burn up in my fire and I didnt want to lose them (motorcycle, jet ski, an extra vehicle) so I began to plan a 'strategic default" which I executed in '10 after about a year and a half of diligent research on this and other boards, talking to judges I knew concerning asset protection and the judgment execution process and talking to a few consumer attnys to line up FDCPA suits if the opportunity presented itself.

I settled out around 30k of my debt (the vast majority) in late '10 and am now in the process of dealing with the tax consequences, which I can hopefully insolvency out of.

I have ignored the rest of my debts as I couldnt afford settling them and some are now in the hands of some JDBS but they are quiet as of now. I have been offered in the neighborhood of 50% settlements on each of these (even the dreaded Capital one thats still I think in their hands)

I do watch my county court website every week to see if anyones trying to sneak a lawsuit past me sewer service style and I plan on vigorously fighting them when/if they rear their head. I have about a year and a half until my states SOL is up for that and I can relax somewhat.

Long story short(er) learn that you do have options in the case of debt, research them all exhaustively and then make a plan and follow it! You have much more power than you think you do! Educating yourself is the key.

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Oh I forgot to add:

Take any help anyone in a business offers you with a grain of salt.

I had tons of settlement companies try and hard sell me into letting the "experts" do my negotiation for me. It was easy and not at all necessary

I had 3 bankruptcy lawyers tell me that bankruptcy was the "only way out" and paint horror stories to try and scare me about how the judgment execution process works. They lied about some things that are clearly spelled out in my states statutes on Judgment and Levy exemption as prohibited just to scare unknowing that I had the statutes all but memorized. I finally became sick of it in one and pulled out my copy of the page from my states code of laws website and showed her. She became disinterested in helping me after that.

I NOW have at least 6 companies hounding me about settling my tax debt. How they know I will have tax debt this year I dont know but they are all but slavering telling me how "you dont want to deal with the IRS yourself!".

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  • 3 weeks later...

....weigh all advice appropriately.

What do I mean by this?

Well this is the world wide web. Anonymity rules supreme. You have NO idea who you are getting advice from (or why). Some folks just like to offer advice, w/absolutely nothing to back up the advice.

Most of those here, have the absolute best intentions....But no forum is devoid of it's share of trolls (ie. those that just have the need to be negative, disruptive, rude, condescending, lord their sense of superiority over newbies, etc.)

If anyone offers advice that seems "off", seems more intent on being negative than helpful....search is your friend. ;) Do a search on their prior posts on this board.

You may find that the person is offering unfounded advice.

For example, they haven't actually won their case, yet and are just learning themselves. Maybe there is no reason whatsoever to take their advice--(other than "because they say so)....:rolleyes:so ignore them and stick to all the other positive people who ARE trying to be helpful.

:mrgreen:

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....

Well this is the world wide web. Anonymity rules supreme. You have NO idea who you are getting advice from (or why). Some folks just like to offer advice, w/absolutely nothing to back up the advice.

:mrgreen:

Thanks T. I have actually been thinking about this quite a bit lately. Especially for someone arriving here for the first time, I think it is often difficult to know who to trust. This is especially true when conflicting opinions are given. In addition to your observations, I would add a couple more.

1. Does the poster reside in your state? I have said this a million times, but the laws of every state are different. There is not such thing as "one size fits all" when it comes to the law.

2. Does the poster reside in your county? Just as the law differs from state to state, practices differ from county to county. Someone who has litigated an issue in your county may be able to give you some sage advice.

3. How far has the poster advanced in his or her case? Pretty simple. If you are asking about a Case Management Conference, has the poster attended one? Has the poster tried his or her case or received a dismissal just before trial?

In short, if you are unsure or receive conflicting advice, consider the above and I think it will help you decide what to do.

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When I first found the site in 2010 I thought, yea right sure un huh that and a buck will get you a cup of coffee at McDonalds. BUT I read and researched and sent out my DV letters and lo and behold they stopped calling.......... I was pretty happy with just that it wasn't until I got sued 6 months later and then I really buckled down. I didn't have a clue when I first started to post last winter and looking for help and trying to understand what to do.

I really missed the boat because there were at least 3 other collectors that I could have sued for FDCPA violations had I had a better handle on the whole thing. Ah the fish that got away :^) which is one reason I keep beating that drum, those FDCPA violations and suits helped me tremendously and gave me leverage.

I was preparing to file bankruptcy, my bankruptcy lawyer told me to go ahead and frog with the collectors, basically said get your docs in order, have fun, and when you are ready to file call and they'll "push the button"

Thanks to what I've learned here I have not had to file bankruptcy and with any luck won't have to in the future, there are a couple things still hanging out there but no worries now. Sued twice, sued 6x and my math says I'm 8 for 8

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Thanks T. I have actually been thinking about this quite a bit lately. Especially for someone arriving here for the first time, I think it is often difficult to know who to trust. This is especially true when conflicting opinions are given. In addition to your observations, I would add a couple more.

1. Does the poster reside in your state? I have said this a million times, but the laws of every state are different. There is not such thing as "one size fits all" when it comes to the law.

2. Does the poster reside in your county? Just as the law differs from state to state, practices differ from county to county. Someone who has litigated an issue in your county may be able to give you some sage advice.

3. How far has the poster advanced in his or her case? Pretty simple. If you are asking about a Case Management Conference, has the poster attended one? Has the poster tried his or her case or received a dismissal just before trial?

In short, if you are unsure or receive conflicting advice, consider the above and I think it will help you decide what to do.

I spoke from experience. :lol:

I was (for lack of better terms) verbally assaulted, w/in my first 24 hours registered here, by someone who insisted I heed their advice. They went so far as to post a negative rating and comment to my personal profile because I stood up to them, and dared to call them on their negativity.

I investigated and found that many of calawyer's examples (provided above) were applicable (i.e the member did NOT reside in my state, and no post's in their history suggested they ever had).

Anonymity does heady things to some, especially when you mix in the fact that others are in need, frightened, etc. I've seen too many people exploit others "vulnerability" on the internet. It's unfortunate, but we all have to be wary of the fact that it's very easy for people to do so.

As I stated before MOST here seem to come from the BEST of places. They've been where the newbie is once upon a time. Knowing how they feel, they are merely offering what was freely given to them.

This is YOUR life, your case, your future. Don't take ANYONE at face value. Do the work, (....YOUR work) to make sure the information you are getting here checks out and is applicable to your situation and case.

Edited by tigger
clarity.
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--There are members who ARE active readers and researchers.

They reside in other places, but actively obtain debt industry information from newsfeeds, etc. They frequently encounter information applicable to other states and share it here. They are debt industry fighters and have a good track record of providing such information for the board.

As calawyer said, know YOUR state rules, and check out the information for yourself to make sure it helps (and doesn't hurt) you and your case. ;)

--There are members who previously resided in your state, were sued when they resided in your state--and are familiar w/the rules (based on that experience). For example, Californian's have 1stStep :)%who always generously offers from their experience having lived and been sued here.

Ok, tigger's getting off her soapbox now....sorry all. :oops:

xdeadhorsex now taking the obligatory....:chillpill:

:lol:

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