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Being Sued by Wells Fargo in Virginia, Advice on Summons


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I am being sued by Wells Fargo for credit card debt for a little over 5K.   I do have a couple of weeks to respond to the summons and would be very grateful for any assistance.  I believe there are a few irregularities but I am not well versed on Virginia law.  The account was also opened in another state. Thank you!!
 
1. The affidavit is marked "personally know to me" and may have been robo signed.   The printed name of the Wells fargo employee who affirmed is listed twice but second the printed name clearly looks like it was clearly written by someone else.   The affidavit has a section for the case number but it has been left blank which raises questions if this was robosigned.
 
2. The affidavit was notarized in Iowa.  The notary is listed as "signature of notary public"   There is no language identifying the notary as a Wells Fargo employee.   I found that information on the Iowa state website specifying he was an employee at Wells Fargo who was a notary.
 
3. In the complaints,  there is "evidence"  that is marked as an EXHIBIT but is listed as a "demand letter" in the complaint.  I never received a demand letter.  the letter I received on that date simply said subject :balance acceleration on credit card ending in ****    I never received a demand letter from Wells Fargo or the attorney that filed the suit on their behalf.
 
4.  In the complaint, there is a  statement in demanding damage "reasonable attorney fees and costs  but there is no specific information on what exactly those fees are or may be.
 
Thank you!
 
 
 
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20 minutes ago, jrs1986P4 said:

2. The affidavit was notarized in Iowa.  The notary is listed as "signature of notary public"   There is no language identifying the notary as a Wells Fargo employee.   I found that information on the Iowa state website specifying he was an employee at Wells Fargo who was a notary.

The affidavit did not have to be notarized in VA.  States have reciprocity agreements.  That means an affidavit made in one state is accepted by another state.

It doesn’t matter with which company the notary is employed.  It also doesn’t matter that it doesn’t inform you that the notary is employed by Wells Fargo.  The purpose of a notary in this case is simply to verify that the person signing the affidavit is actually that person.  

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Thank you for your response.   I still believe this was a robo signed document as the  case number was left blank and the printed signatures by wells fargo are inconsistent.  My sense is that they are back to doing robo signing like Chase Bank.

 

In a 2022 ProPublic article they found that  "Chase “filed lawsuits and obtained judgments against consumers using deceptive affidavits and other documents that were prepared without following required procedures,” the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau concluded in 2015. At times, Chase employees signed affidavits “without personal knowledge of the signer, a practice commonly referred to as ‘robo-signing.’” According to the CFPB’s findings, there were mistakes in about 10% of cases Chase won and the judgments “contained erroneous amounts that were greater than what the consumers legally owed.”

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5 minutes ago, jrs1986P4 said:

Thank you for your response.   I still believe this was a robo signed document as the  case number was left blank and the printed signatures by wells fargo are inconsistent.  My sense is that they are back to doing robo signing like Chase Bank.

 

In a 2022 ProPublic article they found that  "Chase “filed lawsuits and obtained judgments against consumers using deceptive affidavits and other documents that were prepared without following required procedures,” the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau concluded in 2015. At times, Chase employees signed affidavits “without personal knowledge of the signer, a practice commonly referred to as ‘robo-signing.’” According to the CFPB’s findings, there were mistakes in about 10% of cases Chase won and the judgments “contained erroneous amounts that were greater than what the consumers legally owed.”

I understand your concern, and you could raise the issue with the court, but it would be your burden to prove robosigning,  How would you prove it?

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I am not sure how to prove it which is one of the reasons why I am asking for advice.   I do believe that a lack of a Case number on the affidavit helps.  I also have another document I found on the Internet from 2012 where the same Notary is using a different signature that the one they used in my matter. I guess I could request a privilege log but I am not sure how that works in Virginia. 

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35 minutes ago, jrs1986P4 said:

I am not sure how to prove it which is one of the reasons why I am asking for advice.   I do believe that a lack of a Case number on the affidavit helps.  I also have another document I found on the Internet from 2012 where the same Notary is using a different signature that the one they used in my matter. I guess I could request a privilege log but I am not sure how that works in Virginia. 

Unless your state law requires a case number on an affidavit, it doesn’t have to be included.  The affidavit could have been written and signed before the lawsuit was filed, in which case, no case number would have been assigned yet.

The only way to prove robosigning is to either depose the affiant or subpoena the affiant to appear in court and know the right questions to ask.  You also need to know what VA courts require affiants to be able to testify to when they sign business record affidavits. 

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6 hours ago, jrs1986P4 said:

I do have a couple of weeks to respond to the summons and would be very grateful for any assistance. 

In Virginia there is no Complaint to Answer there is a Warrant in Debt in which listed is an appearance date.  You have to appear or you gat default judgement.   Judge will ask you if you owe the debt,  if you answer yes then case over you get judgment. If you say Your not sure of amounts Judge will order a Bill of Materials from plaintiff and Ground of Defense (this is like answer) from you and set date for trial. 

Check to see if Wells Fargo Has Arbitration Clause If they do you should file a MTC before court appearance date. 

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6 hours ago, jrs1986P4 said:

3. In the complaints,  there is "evidence"  that is marked as an EXHIBIT but is listed as a "demand letter" in the complaint.  I never received a demand letter.  the letter I received on that date simply said subject :balance acceleration on credit card ending in ****    I never received a demand letter from Wells Fargo or the attorney that filed the suit on their behalf.

balance acceleration is same thing as demand letter just like frozen water is to ice

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1 hour ago, Bulldoger said:

It will help to know this information

Also read this about Arbitration 

I checked and the current CC agreements have arbitration clause with AAA it is likely yours has one you have get the one for the time you defaulted.  Check here for it https://www.consumerfinance.gov/credit-cards/agreements/

 

Be careful with arbitration and an OC.  The purpose of a MTC arbitration is to hope for a dismissal.  OCs, however, are more likely to agree to arbitration.  

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1 hour ago, BV80 said:

Be careful with arbitration and an OC.  The purpose of a MTC arbitration is to hope for a dismissal.  OCs, however, are more likely to agree to arbitration.  

In this case the amount of debt is equal to cost of arbitration the current WF agreements do not allow for awarding Arb fees or attorney fees. This gives the op leverage to settle.  The agreements states that the issued state are the rules that apply so in Arbitration depending on the state card was issued OP gets Discovery. It my opinion  OP stands a better chance in arbitration because full discovery is available and not the limited BOM and GOD used in VA.  

The odds of winning debt suit in VA against an OC is slim to none at best. If OP decides to go through VA district court WF will get full judgement. 

With Arbitration OP gets better chance of settling since WF bears all cost of arbitration (less filing fee of the OP) plus a better venue to beat the case. If op wins WF will pay them whatever fees they paid.   Also the OP loses they can pay the award before WF files for judgement thereby avoiding a judgement.  

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  • 6 months later...

I had a trial date finally scheduled for November.  In the last few months, I attempted to work out a settlement but the law firm would only accept 80% of the payment.   I finally filed my motion to compel arbitration last week using a form I got from SoloSuit.   Yesterday, i received a motion from the law firm that they moved to  "non-suit" the case with prejudice.   I guess they can try to sue me again but I recently moved to another state where the law firm is not licensed and has no jurisdiction over me. 😀

 

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1 hour ago, jrs1986P4 said:

I had a trial date finally scheduled for November.  In the last few months, I attempted to work out a settlement but the law firm would only accept 80% of the payment.   I finally filed my motion to compel arbitration last week using a form I got from SoloSuit.   Yesterday, i received a motion from the law firm that they moved to  "non-suit" the case with prejudice.   I guess they can try to sue me again but I recently moved to another state where the law firm is not licensed and has no jurisdiction over me. 😀

 

“With prejudice” means they cannot refile.  It’s “without prejudice” that means a lawsuit can be refiled.

Just a note:  While a particular attorney may not be licensed to practice law your new state, a new attorney can be retained to represent a plaintiff.

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53 minutes ago, BV80 said:

“With prejudice” means they cannot refile.  It’s “without prejudice” that means a lawsuit can be refiled.

Just a note:  While a particular attorney may not be licensed to practice law your new state, a new attorney can be retained to represent a plaintiff.

Thanks.  I don't think it will be easy for them to try to sue me for the same debt in a different state.  It is my understanding that they would be relying on Virginia case law in another state or possible federal jurisdiction. 

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2 hours ago, jrs1986P4 said:

Thanks.  I don't think it will be easy for them to try to sue me for the same debt in a different state.  It is my understanding that they would be relying on Virginia case law in another state or possible federal jurisdiction. 

There is no federal jurisdiction for credit card debt collection cases against consumers because they are based on state law. 

My point was not about them suing you again for this debt. Since you wrote that the current law firm is not licensed in your new state, I was only pointing out that plaintiffs don’t have to use the same law firm for every lawsuit.  They hire firms with attorneys that are licensed to sue in the states where they typically file lawsuits.  As a result, they retain the services of various law firms throughout the country.  

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