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Just Got Sued? Do This First . . .

Categories: Bankruptcy & Civil Litigation, Chapter 13, Chapter 7, Debt Collections

If you’ve just gotten served court papers, indicating that a debt collector has sued you, you must act quickly to develop the best strategy in defending this law suit. You only have 3o days to respond to this lawsuit, so time is of the essence. Making the right decision as to your options must be explored immediately.

FIRST

You’ll need to decide whether to fight the law suit or not.  If you choose to fight the law suit, you’ll need to consult with a lawyer to determine whether you have any legal arguments that would support the fight.  Here are some strong legal defenses:

  • Statute of Limitations
  • Identity Theft (The Debt is Not Mine)
  • Already paid in full
  • Make them prove they have the right to collect on the debt

SECOND

Consider other options besides defending the law suit; like, bankruptcy or negotiating a settlement of the  law suit and getting on an affordable payment plan. If you have more debts in addition to the collections law suit, then a bankruptcy case may actually make the debt elimination process more cost effective by eliminating all your debts, while stopping the law suit too.

FINALLY

After you’ve carefully weighed your options, then you’ll need to take action immediately to hire the right attorney to help you with the strategy that is right for you.  It’s important to avoid a judgment because then the creditor has the power to collect on it by garnishing wages, levy bank accounts and lien real property.

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