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Needing help with Midland Funding lawsuit in MN

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Hi there, thank you for taking the time to check this out,

Last week I received a 'summons' from Midland Funding LLC by a courier for a debt they say I owe them. Just today they sent another copy of the 'summons' in a letter that came through the mail (USPS).

After quite a few Google searches which linked me to a lot of  posts on this forum I decided to start my own thread since I believe my issue may be a bit different than the others I've read through. If it isn't something totally 'new', I apologize but I could use help still!

 

Some more of the story:

Last week (April 7th) a courier delivered a few documents stapled together (not in an envelope) to my father and after looking through it, it appears to me to be a fake summons. My father told the courier that I was here but that I was sleeping and accepted it himself.  I'm not sure if it matters, but my father and I share the same name, is that something I can use in my favor? After looking things up, it seems that that may have been a big no no for them to give the document to anyone but me,  or am I mistaken?

I also say 'fake summons' because after checking ( https://www.law.cornell.edu/rules/frcp/rule_4 ) I noticed a few things missing on the 'summons'. There are no signatures anywhere except Midland's attorney, nor do I see a court seal. It also doesn't state the time I must defend myself, so there are at least 3 things missing that supposedly MUST be on it. 

 

After some more researching, I've realized that this may just be them showing me their intent if I do not follow their 'plan'. It also seems more like a bully tactic to scare me into calling them, confessing all of my sins while they record it to use it as evidence to collect on this figure they've come up with which is larger than the limit on any card I've had.

So now, I guess what I'm asking is what should I do next? So far, I haven't done anything. I've read through these documents and quite a few similar issues on here,  and now I'm here looking for help! The documents say I have 20 days to respond (so, from April 7th, which would give me until the 27th, 11 days from today) if it IS legit.

 

Should I try to get free legal help? I cannot really afford an attorney let alone the debt Midland says I owe them, but I've heard Minnesota courts are some of the worst for the consumer (IE: me!) in the country. I don't want to have the deck stacked against me when I'm trying to get my life back in gear. I'll save the full sob story, but I've dealt with addiction and I'm starting up school this fall and this issue is really distracting me from continuing on with the next stage in life. I really hope this isn't as big of an issue as my mind is making it, but trying to stay positive is getting very difficult.

 

Anyway, any help at all would be greatly appreciated! If there's anything I've left out that could be of help,  please let me know so I can provide it.

 

Thank you again for taking the time to read this,

Jeff -

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1) In Minnesota, anyone over the age of 14 in the household can accept service for another person so the courier was correct in giving your father the papers and legal service was effected. No issues here.

2) If you have read the other threads for Minnesota, you would know that Minnesota has a process called Pocket Docket where a plaintiff can file a case against another simply by having the defendant served rather than filing in court. Based on this, the filings are correct, you have been properly served, and you MUST send the plaintiff attorney an answer CMRRR (have your father or a friend send it out because you cannot serve another party in a case your are a party to) by April 27th OR Midland will be able to obtain a default judgement against you. YOU DO NOT WANT THAT! This is real. Do not ignore this.

You an use this form to file you answer. This is easy to figure out how to fill out. You can ask questions on specific paragraphs:
http://www.mncourts.gov/GetForms.aspx?c=7&f=163

Again, this is not filed in the court (unless you want to pay the $300+ fee which they plaintiff attorney is hoping you will do). This is simply served on the plaintiff attorney. You can do the service via US Post. You cannot mail it your self but anyone who is over 18 years of age who is not a party to the case. Since your father shares your name, I would suggest your mother or a friend so that there is no question. You can go to the post office with them BUT they must be the one to hand the envelop to the post office. You must send this (and anything else you send to the plaintiff attorney) by Certified Mail (green paper) Return Receipt Requested (Green Card) so that you can prove it was sent and received. This will cost about $7 - $8 but is worth it and you will do this a few times. You MUST send this out (postmarked) before or on 27 April (they must give the post office reasonable time to get it to them). Once the letter is sent, whoever sent out the letter will need to fill out the form below:
http://www.mncourts.gov/GetForms.aspx?c=33&f=28
 

Keep this and a copy of the answer in a file.

Once you send the defendant your answer, they have 1 year from the date you were served to file this with the court (and pay the court fees). Your job will be to back them into a corner where they either have to file in the court or give up. In other words, you want to become the sand in the gears that gum up the machinery (and this is a well oiled machinery). Once you file your answer, we can assist you on what to ask for based on what they said in their complaint. Most likely, Midland will not be able to produce the required Evidence.

This website will tell you the process after you file your answer:
http://consumerlawyer.mn/consumer-rights/debt-collection-lawsuit/
 

There used to be a website from Mitchell Law School that included a paper that would show what was required of the plaintiff. I would use Google and research that topic along with the rules of civil procedure to understand what is going on. You will need to do the work but hiding your head in the sand will not help you (or worse, could end up getting you arrested). If you stand up and fight, they will eventually go away.

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BTW, the link you provided with rules only applies to cases in Federal Courts. The states are free to make up their own rules when it comes to State Courts so I would ignore that.

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Thank you very much for your reply. I feel like I have a decent grasp on what to do next. I meant to respond earlier but I've had family over and it's been chaos.

I don't necessarily want to fight paying a debt I owe,  my issue here is I don't know that I owe these people anything let alone how much I actually do owe the people I do actually owe, which I think is the case of these defenses against them, right?

Also, this just all seems so crazy to me. What if my dad accepted that summons but I wasn't living here and never heard of it? I'd have a case defaulted against me even though I never knew of it? I'm beginning to dislike my state that's giving these people the tools to harass people with no repercussions.

It's like claiming someone robbed them and having the 'robber' thrown in jail and kept there until they can prove their innocence even though there's no evidence to prove the guilt of the 'robber'. Really goes against the founding principles of our judicial system..

Anyway, I'm ranting. I'll get back to you with what happens if you'd like, or if I need help with anything else if you wouldn't mind :)

 

Thanks again!

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If you were not living there, then your father could have refused service because that is not your household. I have done that many times when the process server came to my place looking for the grandson of the previous owner. That would have forced the lawyers to perform a skip trace on you to find out where you are living.

As for the process, it will not be going away anytime soon. Certain organizations with quite a bit of power (and I am not talking debt collectors here) like the system because it keeps their misdeeds out of the public eye. It was worse before 2013 when the legislature instituted some rules like the 1 year requirement to get into court and a set discovery process. This kinda works to your advantage because by using this process, they effectively removed the case from conciliation (small claims) court into the big time where the fees are higher and the rules of evidence are tighter. Do you honestly think that they want to pay $300+ just to get into court without a 100% chance that they win? All you have to do is back them into a corner where they must go to court to get a judge's opinion and you will probably walk away.

Also realize that most these organizations do not have the proof required to win a case in court. A well filed answer with a decent discovery request is enough to put them on ice. As you say, you do not know if you owe these people and how much. Besides, you can always offer a settlement. Since they paid about $50 - $80 for this debt being 2nd in line, I would suggest starting at $300 with an upper limit of about $600. As you move through discovery, especially if it looks like it will be an argument in court, you can say at $600 that they can decide whether they get the money and go away or they continue and the court ends up with the money. More likely than not, you will settle in that range as this moves along in the process. Also, because Hennepin County is so backed up because of cuts to the court system, it will take years for the case to be heard, even after they file it with the courts if they decide to go that route.

Certainly, I would like to hear what happens and you will probably need help with discovery.

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Hello again,

I've put it off for a while but I still have a few days to get this in the mail and I just wanted to ask a few questions before I fill out the form and have it sent out. I might ask some simple questions but it's just to make sure I have everything just right.

 

So to begin,  I'm guessing I want to print this form out twice and fill it out by hand? Or can I fill most of it out with a word processor?

I'm also guessing I don't need to fill out the judicial district and all of that information yet (as I don't have it) ? I'm just using this form as a template right and will have a copy handy in case they try to go to the next step?

Also, do I fill out the plaintiff as Midland Funding, or their attorney? I'm assuming Midland Funding but I want to be certain!

Can I skip writing under 1 through 3 and only write under  #4 that says "Insufficient information" and write that I have insufficient evidence for all of their complaints, yes? Or should I not leave the previous sections blank? Is there a standard phrasing I should write for the insufficient information or will anything along those lines do?

Under #5, is there anything I should check? I must admit I'm a bit clueless on all of this. I've heard some talk about arbitration but I don't know if that's right for me.

Under #6 is something I don't need to bother with ? Unless they continue to harass me and try to get me to pay them without evidence?

Finally, the last section has some check boxes with "Defendant asks the court to: dismiss plaintiffs complaint, enter judgement for defendant and award defendant etc. etc", is that anything I need to deal with or is that just a continuation of #6?

 

I apologize for asking so much. I tend to be very particular and overly cautious (is it possible to be in this situation?) especially when dealing with documents like this.

 

Thank you again for everything and I will definitely keep you informed as to what happens! I'll be able to get my brother to get this in the mail tomorrow if possible.

Jeff-

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Correct, you leave the box under district court blank as this case has not been filed in court yet.

The defendant is Midland Funding

For Lines 1 - 6:

The paragraphs start at 1. If 1 is your correct name and address, then I would admit to it (line 2).
For the paragraphs that talks about Midland Funding (2 - 5), Insufficient Information (line 4) should be fine (although reading some of them, I would tempted to say deny and bring up FDCPA, TCPA, FTC, and CFPB complaints as proof if I was looking to be annoying).
As for the debt section (6-10), You might be better to deny that than to say insufficient information so line 1 might be better.

For 5, learn what the affirmative defenses are and decide if you have one or not. Some good ones are failure for consideration and maybe Latches. If you wish though, you can leave that blank and amend it later if you find in discovery that you have an affirmative defense.

For 6, unless you have a FDCPA or TCPA claim, you would select no

For the part after Wherefore, just select the first box and leave it at that since you have no counter claim.

You can certainly do this form by hand but your likely, you should use a word processor if possible. The form comes in MS Word format. You will want 2 copies, one for your records and one to serve on the plaintiff attorney. When you send it out, make sure to fill in the certified mail form (green) and the CMRRR (light green) card so that you get a return receipt that the plaintiff attorney received the answer and that it was mailed on time. Also, your brother has to be 18 or over to perform service.

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Thank you so much as always,

I'm filling it out now and I'll attach a scan of the form later if you'd like to look over it. I'm deciding against pestering them with some of those defenses though I may choose an affirmative defense later on if more comes of it.

 I've decided I'll just write that their paragraph 1 is true (my name and address) and that I have no evidence to support any other paragraphs of theirs (section 4) except paragraph 7, because that's the truth. I'm going to deny their paragraph 7  because it seems to say that Midland has provided me with the proper forms / evidence showing they own the account now. 

Do you think denying 6-10 really be my best option though? I have a decent idea about all of this I just can't afford to not get this all right as I'm sure you're aware already haha

Also just to triple check, I am the defendant in this situation right? And the plaintiff is Midland Funding  LLC?

I forgot to add, when mailing this out should I send a copy of their complaint  too or is that unnecessary?

 

I really can't thank you enough for all of this

- Jeff

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Denying is better because it forces them to have to prove the debt. You could technically deny everything except for paragraph 1 and still get it right. It is just better to say you have insufficient information about their business practices but when it comes to the actual debt, it is better to deny.

You are the defendant and Midland is the plaintiff.

No need to send the complaint back with it. They have their own copy. All you need to send is the answer and you need to keep all of this in a folder.

Also, next step is discovery and you need to start to use Google and learn about the rules of civil procedure in Minnesota, what it takes for the plaintiff to prove their case, and what discovery entails. Once you file your answer, you and the plaintiff will have 30 days to do a meet and confer (which can simply be a phone call or exchange of letters) to figure out how discovery is going to go and what documents each side will want.

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Well, I panicked and just went with only denying the single paragraph.. I hope that doesn't negatively effect this too much.  It just made sense to me to say I didn't have enough evidence over flat out denying it, but now that is making more sense to have denied it now.

Is it possible to send a second answer? 

And I have been reading about 'Discovery' a tad lately, going to need to go over it a lot more of course, but I sort of understand it. From what it sounded like I'll have to provide documents / information that THEY ask for?

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You probably will not be able to amend your answer, at least until you get some documents from them and then can decide if the debt is really yours or not.

True, they can request documents/information from you but you are not just required to hand it over. The information has to be relevant to the case and reasonably available. You can also request documents from them and you can bet they will use every legal trick in the book to keep you from getting those documents. Especially when it comes to the actual bill of sale between Citifinancial and Atlantic and between Atlantic and Midland.

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Well so far I haven't heard anything back from them, but I didn't expect to right away. I've done everything recommended, I just need to research up on the discovery process some more. I'll keep you in the loop when I do hear from them though, hopefully it isn't any time soon!

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Did you get your green card back?

Also, use this time to understand discovery and be ready with your own discovery documents. This way, when you do hear from them, you are ready to go because things will move pretty fast once they get going. Use this time well.

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Sorry for the late response, but yes I did get the green card back which I'm holding onto. About 2 days ago I received a packet (sent to 'Jeffery', which is my name misspelled) from Midland with a response (which they sent via first class mail, not certified). I'm not sure if there are any documents I should upload, but I'm just going to go ahead and scan everything anyway.

It's 3 packets stapled together,

The first one saying I have 3 options:

1: I have 14 days to call them to work out a discovery plan.

2: I can mail them my contact information to set up a discovery plan.

3: If they don't hear from me in that time then I default on their plan to pay them 80% on the account.

 

The second is a large amount of papers that 'validate' the debt. They have included, what I would say is possibly the last statement for the credit card from January of 2014, showing no activity on the account outside of them charging ~$70 a month from fees and interest (for who knows how long) Also attached is a 'bill of sale and assignment',  which has a large number of names, signatures and seals, though nothing that directly states my name or account outside of a copy of some slightly detailed information on me (name, address, phone number, aaccount number and money owed on the account) that Midland Credit printed out, not Citibank, and it does not appear to be part of the bill of sale.

 

Finally the third packet is another sheet similar to the original summons they sent me but with different information on it.

Up top it says The old Midland etc etc vs Me.                          Case Number: Rule 26.6 Discovery Conference Report

"The parties / counsel identified below participated in the meeting required by Min. R. Civ. P.26.06 on _____________________ (which is blank) and prepared the following report."

Yea I'm just going to scan this so you can get a better look at it. 

 

Now I've researched Discovery quite a bit but I'm still unsure of what exactly I should have available for this. Would it be things like old account statements? I'm not entirely sure what I should have handy outside of information that's in my head.

 

This is a bit silly with them telling me I have 14 days to respond to a letter that was signed almost 2 weeks ago but only just arrived...

Curious, after reading this does it seem like I'm pretty screwed here? I've seen some other people on here who've, instead of having a lot of bills of sale attached, simply received a spreadsheet with a ton of names and account numbers with only theirs showing. I'm a bit nervous to say the least.

I attached most of the documents they sent me, except about 10 pages of card agreement. If you see anything unnecessary here or that I shouldn't have up I would appreciate if you could let me know.

 

Thank you as always,

Jeff

 

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First thing I would do is call the attorney's office and demand the full 14 days to review what they sent, review what is in your records related to their response, and whether you want to accept their settlement offer or make a counter offer. Your claim is that you received this on the 21st (or if you wait until this afternoon, that you received it today). They cannot prove when you received it because they sent it without the CMRRR and mail is now slower in MN because everything has to go through Saint Paul. You will probably end up talking to someone who calls themselves a paralegal but is really a trained debt collector. If they do not agree with your request, simply demand to speak to the attorney (whoever signed the discover request). They must make the attorney available to you to speak to upon request at a reasonable time.

Once you did that, you have 14 days to determine what you want from them before you would consider this debt to be your debt or not. The first thing I would demand is the credit card agreement that was in force at the time the account went into default. That would not be a trade secret as that is the contract that governs the account. What you are looking for there is if there is an arbitration clause where you could force them to follow you into arbitration which would be way too expensive for them for a $1500 account.

The second thing to demand is an accounting of the account from $0. One statement does not prove account stated in Minnesota.

The third thing is to research the 2 people who signed the affidavits. Look them up on Linkedin if possible and look up the address given and see what type of building it is. What you want to see is if these are real people who you could subpoena if need be or who could even sign said documents.

They are saying that the conditions of the bills of sale are considered trade information and hence, they do not have to divulge them. That may or may not be true and you would have to consider if this is one item you want to attack.

Also, you will need to look through your records to see if you have any statements (doubtful if you have been moving around) and will request your bank records so if you know of any bank you did business with in the past, you might want to request those statements so that you are ready to comply with their requests.

As for a settlement offer, I say offer $500 and see what they say. Most people can come up with $500 quickly if need be and they might accept it when faced with the prospect of actually having to do this.

You will probably have to fill in the form (or create your own using the last 3 pages in the what they sent you along with a cover letter stating your settlement offer. If you find anything in your records related to this account, send that too, otherwise, state in your cover letter that you are still performing research on the account and what records might be available to you.

When you do send this out, do the same thing as with the answer. Even if they did not send their stuff CMRRR, you should do it anyways so that you have proof that they received it.

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Thank you for the prompt reply.

I called them today and they said they would extend the discovery period by 30 days, so hopefully that's ample time for me haha

They did attach a 9 page card agreement with what they mailed me that mentions something about arbitration, I'll just attach that so you can have a look. Honestly, I understand the words but the words put together come up as jibberish in my head :/

I'm curious, have you heard anything about the Volunteer Lawyers Network in MN ( www.vlnmn.org )? I was going to call them for just some general help but they must have closed at 4


Attached the card agreement

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@fisthardcheese @CCRP626

I am going to bring you guys into this at this point now that it is possible that arbitration may come into play. To catch you guys up quickly, Midland's attorney is doing this case using the Minnesota Pocket Docket rules. Summons, Complaint, and Answer have all been filed. The plaintiff sent their discovery documents as shown above and the credit card agreement which the OP will put up later. The OP claims the agreement includes an arbitration clause. The OP has 14 days to answer the plaintiff with their own discovery plan and a possible settlement deal.

I think at this point, if the agreement does include a arbitration clause, because this has not been filed in court yet, the OP could simply fill out the JAMS form, send that to the plaintiff attorney  along with their demand to go to arbitration and a copy of the MTC Arb that the defendant would file should the plaintiff decide to suddenly run for the courts. I would also suggest a settlement offer (of say $300 - $500) to make this all go away. The OP would still have to do the work to prove their case (and there are quite a few questions so far). The case itself is only for $1500 and would not feel bad for the creditor if they paid a ton of money to follow the OP into arbitration because they tried to use the more expensive court process to trick the OP rather than the cheaper conciliatory court process where they probably would have won.

The biggest issue here is that the MN courts and JDB lawyers here are probably not as versed with contractual forced arbitration as cases rarely get to that point. Also, MN is the state that kinda took out forced contractual arbitration in the cases where it was to the benefit of the creditor so the MN Courts may be reluctant to enforce that clause.

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45 minutes ago, WhoCares1000 said:

The biggest issue here is that the MN courts and JDB lawyers here are probably not as versed with contractual forced arbitration as cases rarely get to that point. Also, MN is the state that kinda took out forced contractual arbitration in the cases where it was to the benefit of the creditor so the MN Courts may be reluctant to enforce that clause.

Looking at those sideways documents is hard on your neck. AAA is pretty ticked off with Midland, so that would be the choice to go with. There is a fee request provision in the cardmember agreement so you can start the process with AAA and they'll look for the funds from the Plaintiff.

The one holdup may be the small claims exclusion for arb in the cardmember agreement but you could counter that with it's a one-sided ambiguous contract that also states all claims past, present and future- even before you had an account are to be decided in arb.

@WhoCares1000 the one thing the defendant does not want to do is waive their right to arbitration. Discovery can sometimes do that but you'd have to check state caselaw. If private contractual arb is what you want to do, get a Motion to Compel arbitration filed. That will stay the case as soon as it is filed, not just ruled on. If the Plaintiff pushes discovery with tricks like failure to answer request for admissions makes them admitted, the case is stayed. Do not participate in litigation if you intend to arbitrate.

https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=572B.07

(e) If a party files a motion with the court to order arbitration under this section, the court shall on just terms stay any judicial proceeding that involves a claim alleged to be subject to the arbitration until the court renders a final decision under this section.

(f) If the court orders arbitration, the court shall on just terms stay any judicial proceeding that involves a claim subject to the arbitration. If a claim subject to the arbitration is severable, the court may sever it and limit the stay to that claim.

 

 

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Oh, both Midland and Citibank have CFPB orders against them, so review those on documentation required before initiating lawsuits.

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RE: Arbitration - the best thing with AAA is that they accept email filing.  This means you can file a case TODAY in arbitration and since this is not filed in court yet, any so-called small claims exceptions are out the window because you beat them to it.  Then, if they do file in court, you have a wrong venue claim which could be an FDCPA violation (leverage to use). 

www.adr.org is the AAA website.  I would read the Consumer Arbitration rules and find the "Demand for Consumer Arbitration" form.  The bottom of the form has instructions for filing.  You can send all the documents via PDF to the email address on the form to file your case.  You also can find a credit card authorization form to fill out to pay the $200 consumer filing fee to AAA.  If you have no debit card to use, AAA will still accept your filing by email and I would just let them know in the body of my email that I am sending my filing fee by mail.  For that matter, you can stall on the filing fee to wait and see what Midland's move is first. 

If this were me, my goal is to make sure I have proof of arbitration filing with a case number (which AAA will email to you usually within 24 hours of your email filing) that is dated prior to the JDB filing anything in court.  It will take away their right to court according to their own contract, AND it takes away the court's subject matter jurisdiction.

Don't forget that even though you email AAA to file the case, you still need to send a copy to Midland's attorney CMRRR.  You will need to send them a copy of everything AAA requires, which includes the Arb clause from the card agreement and the AAA demand form. I would also send a letter with my documents indicating to the attorney that I have chosen to exercise my arbitration rights per the card agreement they provided to me rather than proceed in court.  I would make a copy of the letter I send to them and include that as part of the documents I submit to AAA.

@shellieh98 also has some good posts on arbitration.

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11 hours ago, CCRP626 said:

@WhoCares1000 the one thing the defendant does not want to do is waive their right to arbitration. Discovery can sometimes do that but you'd have to check state caselaw. If private contractual arb is what you want to do, get a Motion to Compel arbitration filed. That will stay the case as soon as it is filed, not just ruled on. If the Plaintiff pushes discovery with tricks like failure to answer request for admissions makes them admitted, the case is stayed. Do not participate in litigation if you intend to arbitrate.

I need clarification from @WhoCares1000 on the pocket docket rules.  You said "before Midland runs for the courts", which led me to beleive they haven't fild anything in court, but you also said a complaint and answer have been filed so I am a bit confused.  Is this actually a pending case in court, or is this one of those things where the case isn't technically filed yet?  The pocket docket rules are always confusing and convoluted to me.

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I put the pocket docket rules in my first thread (mainly as a warning to the OP to take this seriously which they had done) but in general, here are the concepts:
 

  1. A lawsuit is considered opened when the summons and complaint is served on the defendant without any case being filed in court
  2. The law requires that once an answer is files, discovery must commence and must be done orderly
  3. The case must be filed with the courts within one year or it is automatically dismissed with prejudice
  4. This cannot be used for conciliatory (small claims) court

This process was initially designed at the behest of the Mayo Clinic which is MN's largest employer to keep their misdeeds out of the public eye by allowing the Clinic to settle before it ends up as public records should they so wish to do so. JDB's however has used it to trick defendants that their is no suit and to make low amount cases like this one more expensive (because both parties pay the court fees). It also allows the JDB attorneys to see if there are any assets to collect before bothering to pay court fees in the case of defaults and many people have ended up in jail thinking this was a non-suit and ignoring the asset conference after a judgement has been rendered against them. There were worst abuses before about 2013/2014 when the legislature took some action after a Star Tribune report on the practice.

One of the biggest abuses however remains and that is that cases like this end up in regular court rather than conciliatory court where they belong. From what has been said about arb however, that is probably a good thing because the OP can now invoke arb. In fact, that probably turns the tables on the plaintiff who were hoping to make the defendant spend a ton of money to defend this should it end up in court.

As for discovery, if you look at the section d #3 of the discovery documents, that would be where the defendant would put in their demand for arb and then during a conference call, the defendant brings up that they have filed for arb under the mandatory arb clause in the agreement and that they will file a stay should the case end up in court.

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@RescueToaster

I have never heard of that group but it would not hurt if you can discuss this with an attorney now that you have 30 days. It is probably something that is in the Twin Cities area that is not available to those in outstate MN (where I am at). Remember though, in the end, you have to make your own decisions on what is right for the case.

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20 hours ago, CCRP626 said:

Looking at those sideways documents is hard on your neck. AAA is pretty ticked off with Midland, so that would be the choice to go with. There is a fee request provision in the cardmember agreement so you can start the process with AAA and they'll look for the funds from the Plaintiff.

Apologies, I'll take those down and rotate them. I didn't even think about that, I was sort of in auto pilot panic mode at the time. (They are now properly displayed to the benefit of neck health!)

I have to tell you all that I appreciate this help from everyone, I still have problems sleeping but I'm regaining a bit of comfort every day. This is definitely not healthy for someone in recovery hah

I have to ask, when dealing with Citibank, before they apparently sold my account to whoever else, I had spoken with a lady in their collection department and told them I was in treatment and we worked out a deal. They would pause the interest and fees and stop sending me bills and when I started to earn money again we could work out a deal, but apparently they canceled  that deal. They stopped calling me every month and then this occurred about a year later. Would that benefit any sort of case I could use?

I must admit, I'm highly confused with most of the terminology and language being used here (my head is clogged with computers and nerd stuff), but it seems like arbitration may be my best course of action? I'm going to call the VLN I mentioned and see what they have to say, and I definitely won't make any hasty decisions on this, though with a time restraint it seems like it can be a necessity, sadly.

I must mention this, I never actually spoke to the attorney listed (Michael Johnson I believe his name is), but a paralegal I spoke with (another Michael, coincidentally) said they noted on the account that they would extend the period by 30 days. I like many people, don't record calls so I really have no evidence to prove that they agreed to do so (outside of asking to use THEIR recordings, I suppose), but do you think they would use any dirty tricks like that, "Oh yes, we fixed it! (we really didn't!)", to have me automatically agree with their default plan?

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6 hours ago, WhoCares1000 said:

I put the pocket docket rules in my first thread (mainly as a warning to the OP to take this seriously which they had done) but in general, here are the concepts:
 

  1. A lawsuit is considered opened when the summons and complaint is served on the defendant without any case being filed in court
  2. The law requires that once an answer is files, discovery must commence and must be done orderly

Thank you!

Considering that you are from a "pocket docket" state, you obviously know and understand the rules.

Recently, another poster was sued in a "pocket docket" state, and a member replied with:

"You cannot answer when no lawsuit has ever been filed."

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