What Happens in a Debt Collection Lawsuit
When a consumer contacts a debt settlement company in an effort to get credit card debt assistance leading to credit card debt elimination, the potential customer will be told that it is very rare for credit card companies to sue a delinquent credit card holder. It happens all of the time.
The credit card companies follow a protocol or a certain procedure in dealing with collecting delinquent accounts. First, they will try to collect the accounts themselves. If that fails they will turn the accounts over to 3rd party bill collectors. Failing collection by the 3rd party bill collectors the accounts will be turned over to a debt collection law firm.
The consumer should knowing and understand procedures involved in a debt collection lawsuit. By know and understanding these procedures the consumer will realize the importance of employing a debt settlement attorney for help with credit card debt.
Upon the account being put in the hands of a debt collection law firm, the attorney in that firm will send the delinquent debtor what is known as a “30 day letter”. Federal law requires this letter be sent. The letter says that the law firm has been retained to represent the credit card company and makes a demand for payment. It will also say that the debtor has 30 days to dispute the validity of the debt. Provided also is a statement advising the debtor that if the debtor fails to respond a suit may be filed in an effort to obtain a judgment. For those who are represented by a debt settlement attorney, all responses to the debt collection attorney will be made.
It should be noted that after receipt of this letter, the debt settlement attorney will commence settlement negotiations with the debt collection attorney. Most times some type of settlement can made without any lawsuit being filed.
If, however, a suitable settlement cannot be reached suit will be filed. It will be filed in state court in the state wherein the debtor resides. The debtor will be designated the “Defendant”. At this point certain responses and pleadings must be made in order for the Defendant to avoid a “default judgment”. The defendant can represent himself/herself. Unless the defendant has a good deal of legal knowledge and ability in drafting legal documents the defendant is in peril. The old adage, “one who represents himself in court proceedings has a fool for a client” is certainly applicable. Only an attorney at law has the necessary legal knowledge, understanding, and skills to adequately represent a defendant in a debt collection law suit.
The debt settlement attorney will prepare and file all responsive pleadings. The first of such pleadings is an “Answer to the Complaint”. This answer may take to form of a denial or may raise legal defenses such as the “Statute of Limitations”. The attorney may chose to file certain motions such as a “Motion to Quash the Summons“, “Motion to Produce”, “Motion for Discovery”, or a “Motion to Dismiss”, to name a few. The attorney will make all court appearances to argue these motions.
Eventually, a judgment of some nature may be entered against the defendant. This judgment has ramifications regarding the defendant that can be critical. The judgment may constitute a judgment lien on any un-exempted real estate owned by the defendant. It may be the basis for seizure and sale of any un-exempted personal property such as vehicles, motorcycles, boats, etc. It may be the basis for some type of bank or wage garnishment.
Most likely the debt settlement attorney can work out a “Consent Judgment” which effectively does away with the most egregious aspects of a court judgment. This “Consent Judgment” has the effect of putting a “stay” or prohibiting any collection procedures including seizure, and garnishment of bank accounts or wages. Typically, some type of repayment plan is incorporated.
Being sued by a credit card company for repayment is unpleasant, but if you are represented by a qualified and court experienced debt settlement attorney all aspects of the lawsuit are manageable.
Associated Attorneys, LLC will provide you with a debt settlement attorney licensed and practicing law in your state who will negotiate and settle your credit card debts. The attorney will, at no additional costs, represent you in any court proceedings.
For more information call, toll free (866) 411-4693 or contact www.associatedattorneys.com
About the Author: Melvin R. Singleterry, licensed practicing attorney, former Judge and former District Attorney, specializing in credit card debt negotiation and debt settlement. Owner and manager of Associated Attorneys, LLC.