Phillio9

About to be sued in SC by Midlands Credit Management

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Hello Everyone,

I recently got a suspicious piece of mail from a mediator regarding a pending court case. I googled the case number to see it was recently filed by an attorney from Clarkson and Hale Law office in Columbia, SC (3hours away) on behalf of Midlands Credit Management regarding a Synchrony account that was charged off 1.5 year ago. The SOL in my state is 3 years. Today a deputy left his card at my door while I was at work. Hoping to catch him I returned the call but he was already gone. The department is closed until Tuesday bc of the holiday. I want to get a jump start on this and be as prepared as possible. I’ve never been in this position. I don’t want to pay Midlands bc the account already reflects poorly on my credit and doing so won’t change anything, but honestly I can’t afford to settle right now. Everything is tight. I have never corresponded with them- not taken one call or sent correspondence. I do own my home and don’t want a judgement. My paycheck cannot be garnished in my state but my bank account probably can be frozen. It will be a freaking nightmare to loose my bank accounts. Here is some info:

may 7- summons and conplaint

may 11- archived summons s/cc/d

may 11- summons and conplaint docs

they have paid  $80 in court fees so far 

I’m a bit nervous and I do want to fight it. So far, everything is filed in my county Horry. The amount is maybe close to 3670. Please advise on the beginning steps and timeline. I’m literally researching the law threads that may pertain to a beginner like me. Thank you in advance!!

 

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15 hours ago, Phillio9 said:

My paycheck cannot be garnished in my state but my bank account probably can be frozen. It will be a freaking nightmare to loose my bank accounts

Check SC law, but I believe up to $5000.00 in cash is exempt from levy.  

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On 5/22/2020 at 6:02 PM, Harry Seaward said:

You're not "about to be sued".  You've been sued.  The good news is that Synchrony is the original creditor.

https://www.creditinfocenter.com/community/topic/329436-arbitration-overview-and-strategy-2018-most-up-to-date-info/

 

Right, I got my summons and now I’m ready to respond after some advice. I’ve read up and want to make sure I’m making the best choices. 
So, is it best to respond with ‘motion to compel arbitration’?  From what I understand Midlands is good for not responding to AAA? I’ve enclosed my questionnaire and an affidavit included from midlands from a legal secretary swearing that the account is mine and providing a partial account number. Is that right?? Why don’t they list the entire number? 
 

 

 

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On 5/23/2020 at 9:11 AM, BV80 said:

Check SC law, but I believe up to $5000.00 in cash is exempt from levy.  

I read that $5K

 

On 5/23/2020 at 9:11 AM, BV80 said:

Check SC law, but I believe up to $5000.00 in cash is exempt from levy.  

I found this:

South Carolina law offers a list of exemptions for property, including financial accounts (S.C. Code § 15-41-30). South Carolina requires judgment-creditors to leave $5,000 in "liquid assets". "Liquid Assets" includes deposits, securities, notes, drafts, unpaid earnings not otherwise exempt, accrued vacation pay, refunds, prepayments, and other receivables.
 

So, does that mean they can’t touch my account? I never keep that much, money in and straight out to pay bills. Can they touch my thrust savings?

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Hi Everyone, and thank you for your help. I contacted the court and they said I can just write on the questionnaire that was included in my summons packet. I had to ask twice if that was ok and not to type it up. Now, I found a copy of the cardmember agreement to include with my paper and it discusses arbitration. Should I also file an affidavit saying that is my credit card agreement and have it notarized to include with my response- or do I wait until court for that? I am going to mail this in by tomorrow. Please advise. Thank you. 

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Just to be clear- I am stating on every question that I wish to seek arbitration/ motion to compel arbitration per my credit card agreement..? I do not have to actually answer the questions specifically, or do I? 

 

 

 

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Update-

I filed my response with the court denying the plaintiffs claim. It was only a couple of questions. Now, I have prepared my letter to elect arbitration, affidavit of cardmember agreement, cardmember agreement copy, mtc arb, and jams demand forms. 
Anxiety is starting to set in. This is in magistrates court where you have to answer the complaint first before filing a motion. Was I supposed to mail the Atty my letter to elect arbitration first and then submit my answer on the complaint to the court (I elect private arbitration per cardmember agreement) and used this as an absolute defense. HELP!

will the judge still hear my plea?

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UPDATE--

Monday 7-13 Hearing in Magistrate's Court. Atty for Midlands appeared and had made settlement offers with everyone but me. We went up before the judge at the very end and the atty presented his evidence regarding the case- statements, correspondence from synchrony, bill of sale- etc. When the judge asked me to speak I advised that I did my research and was able to locate the cc agreement outlining the arbitration clause. I stated that I would like to move venues due to this and provided an election to arbitrate letter for the plaintiff, copy of card member agreement and affidavit, a motion to compel arbitration, and the demand forms for JAMS. The judge looked at the atty and asked 'what say you?" He requested to see the agreement and agreed to arbitration provided we have a time frame to do so because he was concerned that I may not follow through due to parties in the past doing so. The judge ordered 30 for this and we agreed. The judge also said that he would continue this case until we are resolved in arbitration. He did not ask to see my docs, he did not set a future court date either. I am confused about this bc it contradicts a lot of what I have read on here. What are my next steps-- I was thinking of sending the atty's office my letter to elect arbitration via certified. Filiing JAMS today. Calling the clerk of court to see if I need to file my documents there.

Please advise me what I need to do as there are so many knowledgeable people here who have been so helpful. I'm confused. I don't feel resolved yet.

@Harry Seaward  @Brotherskeeper  would you guys mind sharing your thoughts. Thank you

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2 hours ago, Phillio9 said:

UPDATE--

Monday 7-13 Hearing in Magistrate's Court. Atty for Midlands appeared and had made settlement offers with everyone but me. We went up before the judge at the very end and the atty presented his evidence regarding the case- statements, correspondence from synchrony, bill of sale- etc. When the judge asked me to speak I advised that I did my research and was able to locate the cc agreement outlining the arbitration clause. I stated that I would like to move venues due to this and provided an election to arbitrate letter for the plaintiff, copy of card member agreement and affidavit, a motion to compel arbitration, and the demand forms for JAMS. The judge looked at the atty and asked 'what say you?" He requested to see the agreement and agreed to arbitration provided we have a time frame to do so because he was concerned that I may not follow through due to parties in the past doing so. The judge ordered 30 for this and we agreed. The judge also said that he would continue this case until we are resolved in arbitration. He did not ask to see my docs, he did not set a future court date either. I am confused about this bc it contradicts a lot of what I have read on here. What are my next steps-- I was thinking of sending the atty's office my letter to elect arbitration via certified. Filiing JAMS today. Calling the clerk of court to see if I need to file my documents there.

Please advise me what I need to do as there are so many knowledgeable people here who have been so helpful. I'm confused. I don't feel resolved yet.

@Harry Seaward  @Brotherskeeper  would you guys mind sharing your thoughts. Thank you

In the first post of the following thread, you’ll see Filing the Arbitration Case.  It tells you everything you need to know.

https://www.creditinfocenter.com/community/topic/329436-arbitration-overview-and-strategy-2018-most-up-to-date-info/

BTW, to alert another member, use the “@“ symbol followed by the member’s name.

@Brotherskeeper

@Harry Seaward

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2 hours ago, Phillio9 said:

The judge looked at the atty and asked 'what say you?" He requested to see the agreement and agreed to arbitration provided we have a time frame to do so because he was concerned that I may not follow through due to parties in the past doing so.

The attorney for Midland is concerned that you won't follow through with arbitration? Wait until his client gets the invoice from JAMS. 

Are you saying that the plaintiff's attorney stipulated to your motion and the judge will sign an order? It looks like the judge stayed the case and gave you 30 days to file a demand with JAMS. I don't know what it is called in your court, but after you file your claim demand with JAMS and get confirmation, you would file a status report or a notice with the court to show you have complied with the judge's order. Read the link @BV80 gave you on arbitration. It contains a wealth of good information and advice 

I think you did a great job! 

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Yes, the judge stayed. It is my understanding that the plaintiff will have to file an update with the judge in 30 days per the clerk- she said I don’t have to contact the judge. I received no signed order. I’m mailing everything out tomorrow (Atty letter and JAMS ppwk). Do I need a signed judges order for the arbitration for JAMS? Thank you so much. 

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On 7/13/2020 at 6:21 PM, Phillio9 said:

It is my understanding that the plaintiff will have to file an update with the judge in 30 days per the clerk- she said I don’t have to contact the judge.

Why would the plaintiff have to file an update with the court when it was your motion to compel arb and stay that was stipulated to at the hearing? You are the one who is supposed to file a claim demand in JAMS, and within 30 days, correct? Plaintiff agreed to go to arb, but requested a stay of 30 days for you to file within. If you were to fail to file within 30 days, plaintiff could ask the judge to lift the stay and resume the court case. 

On 7/13/2020 at 6:21 PM, Phillio9 said:

I received no signed order. I’m mailing everything out tomorrow (Atty letter and JAMS ppwk). Do I need a signed judges order for the arbitration for JAMS?

You need to check your case file to see what the judge actually ordered.  Read Fisthardcheese's pinned thread on arb in JAMS that BV80 gave you the link to. 

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Today I found an email from the attorney’s office stating: 
“My client no longer wishes to pursue this account through the courts or through arbitration.  Thanks.“

now what? Do I forward it to the magistrates court? Confused as to whether or not it’s really  over...?

 

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14 hours ago, Phillio9 said:

Today I found an email from the attorney’s office stating: 
“My client no longer wishes to pursue this account through the courts or through arbitration.  Thanks.“

now what? Do I forward it to the magistrates court? Confused as to whether or not it’s really  over...?

 

It ain't over yet, but you are very, very close to a victory.  

 

It is over when the case is dismissed.  They are now saying they want to end it.  You need to get this finalized.,  

Send a return email offering a mutual dismissal of charges in both court and arbitration with a dismissal with prejudice. Negotiate a bit on the wording  Get the documents signed, and over to the court and arbitrators.  

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I think the Atty is responsible for contacting the court to have the case dismissed. Remember, I don’t have another court date scheduled. The judge said that the Atty was to update him within 30 days on the status and make sure we both agreed to arbitration. Today JAMS emailed us and the Atty said the do not wish to pursue the arbitration or court. Do I need to have an agreement from them to dismiss or is my correspondence enough. Thanks. 

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