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. That occurs often.

There is a specific procedure that credit card companies use to collect 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.

Once the account is sent to a debt-collection law firm, the firm’s attorney will send a 30-day letter to the delinquent debtor. In some lawsuits, certain documents are sent out pursuant to federal rules and regulations. The firm said on paper that they would work with the credit card company but requested to be paid first. This will also tell you that the period of time which debtor has in order to file a dispute is 30 days. 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.

Suit will be filed if a settlement can’t be reached. It will be filed in state court in the state wherein the debtor resides. The debtor will be designated the Defendant. Certain responses and pleadings are required at this point so a “default judgment” is not lodged against the defendant. Defendants can represent themselves. Unless the defendant has a good deal of legal knowledge and ability in drafting legal documents the defendant is in peril. “One who represents himself in court proceedings has a fool for a client” is an applicable old adage. Only an attorney at law has the necessary legal knowledge, understanding, and skills to adequately represent a defendant in a debt collection law suit.

A debt settlement lawyer will fix and send all applicable documents. The first of such pleadings is an answer to the Complaint. The response may appear like a denial or could even raise legal defenses like “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.

After awhile, some type of judgement could be filed 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. This may be the reason for some kind of bank or wage attachment.

It is possible that your attorney can get rid of the worst of a court procedure by using a “Consent Judgment”. “Consent Judgement” does not allow collection procedures such as seizure, freezing of bank accounts and 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.

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