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Last year I was sued in California by the esteemed firm Patenaude & Felix for a National Collegiate student loan, 39K or so. I hired a firm last year for attorney-assisted defense, and they prepared my answer and discovery, etc. That is all long done and now trial is coming up in 46 days on April 25th. To save some $ I would like to do the rest of this myself if I can, so what now?  I know the rules for unlimited civil cases are different from limited (under 25K) cases, so I want to make sure I'm proceeding correctly, or if I can even do this on my own. It seems P&F is all bark and no bite when it comes to trial and I am determined at the very least to stand my ground until the last minute!  Thanks in advance.

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You'll need to do some kind of motion to the court firing the attorney's and make an appearance as pro se.................OR find another firm more competent.

 

Just saying.....................

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Need a little more background. Who is suing you? The OC, or a JDB? Did you do discovery?

 

Being sued by National Collegiate Student Loan Trust who bought my loan from Bank of America. Discovery is complete; they were able to produce the note I signed and the document assigning B of A student loans to National Collegiate.  This was all completed last year. A law firm prepared all the discovery docs for me and assisted me with answering plaintiff's discovery, but to date I have filed everything myself as a defendant in pro per (self-representing).

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You'll need to do some kind of motion to the court firing the attorney's and make an appearance as pro se.................OR find another firm more competent.

 

Just saying.....................

 

I was never formally represented by these attorneys; they provided an "attorney assisted" service where they prepared my answer, case management conference, and discovery, but I did all the filing. I also appeared at the case management conference as defendant in  pro per.  This was all wrapped up by June with a very long delay until my trial date next month.

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This is a tough one..........Have you explored the possibility of settlement with this fund? Possibly depending on your income they might be willing to settle or write down the loan for much less than they are asking. Since it appears to be a privately financed student loan????? It might be possible that BK could extinguish this loan.................if that is the case they might be convinced to take a major big loss and settle versus losing the entire amount to a BK. Another thing to consider is the SOL on Contract Loans in CA.....................there are several here that might know about this.

 

Hopefully some of our CA folks know if there is some program to maybe get all or most of this forgiven, or way to get a waiver of the loan instead of settling or BK. I'll watch this thread with some interest.This doesn't appear to be a typical JDB case and the amount is significant.

 

In any case good luck!

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This is a tough one..........Have you explored the possibility of settlement with this fund? Possibly depending on your income they might be willing to settle or write down the loan for much less than they are asking. Since it appears to be a privately financed student loan????? It might be possible that BK could extinguish this loan.................if that is the case they might be convinced to take a major big loss and settle versus losing the entire amount to a BK. Another thing to consider is the SOL on Contract Loans in CA.....................there are several here that might know about this.

 

Hopefully some of our CA folks know if there is some program to maybe get all or most of this forgiven, or way to get a waiver of the loan instead of settling or BK. I'll watch this thread with some interest.This doesn't appear to be a typical JDB case and the amount is significant.

 

In any case good luck!

 

It is indeed a private loan but even private loans are not dischargeable in BK, and having already been through a BK 7 years ago it's not an option anyway. SOL in CA is 4 years and this loan does fall within the SOL, unfortunately.

 

I want to hold out until the very last minute on settlement because the law firm Patenaude & Felix does not like to go to trial and they have a track record of giving up right before trial. They make their money off default judgments and I've already avoided that by answering the lawsuit last year. I just need to be walked through the steps from here until the mandatory settlement conference a week before trial.  Since this is an unlimited case the usual CCP 96 request 45 days before trial does not apply here; I need to know what to do instead.

 

A few months ago P&F sent me a "verification" signed by the custodian of records for National Collegiate attesting to the veracity of the Plantiff's responses to my discovery request, in which I asked for their complete file. I would imagine this person would be subpoenaed at this point, but again, I need to know how to proceed.

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Well, looks like this is too complicated for me to go it alone, so off to the lawyers I go. If this were a limited case it might be different. Anyway, thanks to all for responding.

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Actually limited civil has more restrictions and complications then unlimited.

 

 

Then why was no one able to assist me here?

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FX,

 

Part of the reason no one is chiming in is you have no defense, they have produced the note you signed for the loan.  Next this is for $39K I would not count on P&F just strolling in unprepared not to win.  While I agree they are a large DC firm and they live off default judgments, they are still attorneys.

 

If you go it alone, you will need to challenge any witness ability to verify the documents from B of A.  It is not likely they will have someone from B o A at the trial.  The person who verified may show up, because they need someone to authenticate the evidence.  You will need to challenge any witness not from B o A regarding how they know BoA business practices and the like.

 

Unfortunately, those Student Loans look good, right up until they need to be paid back.  They don't offer many outs based on how they are structured in the contracts and with no BK, they are a forever problem....

 

Best of Luck

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Then why was no one able to assist me here?

You may have been able to be helped and maybe still can. You stopped posting.

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You may have been able to be helped and maybe still can. You stopped posting.

Well, I stopped because I got little response to my first posts, which were pretty thorough. There really wasn't much more I could add and was really hoping for some specific guidance. It's moot now; I hired a lawyer.

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FX,Unfortunately, those Student Loans look good, right up until they need to be paid back.  They don't offer many outs based on how they are structured in the contracts and with no BK, they are a forever problem....

 

Best of Luck

 

Isn't that the truth. At this point I'm just hoping my attorney can work out a reasonable settlement deal. At least I avoided default judgment and can hopefully put this behind me soon. Thanks for the well wishes.

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