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Jacquephx

PRA - Collin County TX - judge denied discovery request

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Hello all:

Looking for some advice on how to proceed next.  Last August we were served with a lawsuit from Portfolio Recovery Associates on an old debt that was 1 month away from expiring SOL - so they got it in just in time.  We answered the suit and also made the request to the court to conduct discovery.  We never heard back from the court - on anything.  I would periodically check the Collin County website and nothing was happening.  All of a sudden we got a notice in the mail that we had a trial date set.  Went to the courthouse to find out what happened with the discovery request.  Long story short - it got lost in some shuffle somehow, somewhere and the judge never saw it.  The people at the court assured my husband that at the date that was set for trial that it would turn into a motion hearing so that we could conduct discovery.  Husband goes for the motion hearing - PRA attorney hands over a few statements and the judge says "there is your discovery".   Judge says "we can go through this whole thing but you will end up paying this and the attorney fees."  He was agitated that the mistake happened but didn't seem to care about it.  He also noted that PRA is very aggressive.  Nothing is updated yet on the website as far as what will happen yet - but the judge told my husband to negotiate with PRA - said we could fight it but that they will win.  I am so lost - we did what we thought we were supposed to do and because someone dropped the ball at the court, we are in a bad position.  It sounds like this judge sides with creditors instead of debtors.  What should we do at this point?  If we settle with them, what is a reasonable settlement?  Husband heard the attorney talking about needing special authorization for 50% on original debt.  Is there any further recourse we can have with the court?  Any/all advice would be greatly appreciated!

Thanks much.

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Contact this attorney located in Ft. Worth-  http://jarzombeklaw.com

He can likely turn this around in your favor and there is definitely grounds for appeal here.  

You did not mention the amount you are being sued for but if it more than $1,500 it will be well worth your while.   There will not be a charge for initial consultation.

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11 hours ago, Jacquephx said:

What should we do at this point?

Hire a consumer attorney.  PRA will back down when faced with opposing counsel.  I would rather pay the attorney than PRA.  What you have found out is that Collin County is VERY creditor friendly.  The Justice Courts can go either way but lately we are seeing more and more that they simply rubber stamp for the JDB.  

The court screwing up the motion and the Judge basically rendering a verdict before hearing the case is solid grounds for an appeal.  Had it been me standing there I would have simply smiled and said "Thank you your honor I will note that for my appeal." and moved on.  He has made up his mind and neither you nor the law is going to change it.

 

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Dissenting opinion: 

 Sounds to me like judge may not care for companies like PRA using his courtroom as an arm of their collection efforts, but he is bound by the facts and was trying to be helpful - a settlement agreement at this point is better than a judgement for a higher amount.

Attempting to overturn a judge's discretion on evidentiary matters in a civil trial seems like an expensive waste of time, but it's not my money. 

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To address some questions posed thus far:

the amount PRA is seeking to recover is $4900 - so quite a bit more than $1500. 

PRA had nine cases on the docket that day - most all of them rubber stamped for a default judgment because the defendant didn't show. So clearly PRA is just farming them through to get the default judgments. 

The court always had the copy of the request for discovery - they just misplaced it until my husband pointed out that he had filed it.  We also still have the original copy that the court stamped as received last August.  When the case came up the gal my husband had talked to told the judge "this is the case I told you about" but when PRA attorney handed over their "discovery" it was just statements along with one of those general blanket bill of sale statements and an affidavit.   The discovery we had prepared was quite a bit more detailed than what they handed over but the judge just pushed it through. Very frustrating to have this request summarily dismissed because it seemed he couldn't be bothered with it. He also made reference to "various online forums" where you can try to defend yourself but basically alluded to the fact that they just have to verify my husband's identity and we would have to settle or lose- either way we will pay. 

Thanks again to all. 

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I'm just curious what exactly you were hoping to find in discovery? That PRA forged the account? That they found the statements in the bank's dumpster and are "pretending" that they bought the account? What "smoking gun" do you presume they are hiding?

 

 

 

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