Have you been sued by a credit card company or a debt collector? Here is what to expect.
If you have been sued at the magistrate, you were most likely sent a complaint by certified mail. You signed for the mail and in the envelope was a Complaint. The Complaint notifies you of who is suing you and how much they allege you owe. There is a chance that the company suing you is a debt collector. If it is a debt collector you may not be familiar or recognize their name.
At this point is when I recommend that you call our office. We offer free no obligation consultations. We can help you determine your best course of action. However, if you don’t call our office the Complaint you received comes with a Notice that you are required to tell the magistrate if you want to defend the lawsuit. You want to defend it. If you do not defend it they will place a default judgment against you.
Once the debt collector has a judgment they can take more aggressive action to collect the debt. Again, I recommend that you talk to our firm as we have options to defend you against the creditor. If we are defending you, you generally do not have to attend the hearing. If you represent yourself you will have to go to the hearing, this is after you told the court you were defending the case.
At the hearing the Credit Card Company or Debt Collector will have the obligation to go first and prove its case against you. You will then have the right to challenge any information they have provided to the court. This includes objecting to the documents they are using to establish you owe the debt.
Believe it or not we are pretty successful at this point in challenging the documents that the credit company has to establish you owe them money.
If you were served by the Sheriff, you will most likely be in the court arbitration program. This means that generally your case will be heard by a three attorney panel. This arbitration has different rules than the magistrate hearings we were just talking about.
However, it is still important to make sure you are familiar with all of the evidence rules. Our team uses these evidence rules to defend you in your case. Oftentimes, we are able to defend you at the arbitration without you needing to attend the arbitration or the magistrate hearing. It is important to call our team whenever you are served with debt collection legal documents so we can mount the best defense on your behalf.
We offer free consultations for our debt relief services and payment plans as well.
If you have any questions about the topic discussed in this article, or any bankruptcy law matter, please give us a call at Bononi & Company 724-832-2499.