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    Question

    In Texas, if you have a credit card debt for about $7500, and do not pay, do you go to jail?

    What punishment is there? I need real answers please and the source?
    a few seconds ago 10 Answers

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    I agree with most of the other posters that a person cannot go to jail for credit card debt. If a collector or original creditor is threatening that then they are violating your rights. I believe Kevin posted a pretty good answer - except - Texas "does not" allow wage garnishment for unsecured debt (credit cards, etc). If they sue and win for a credit card debt, they possibly could take the funds in your bank account but, other than that, all that they would be able to do is place a lien on any property that is in your name. They cannot force you to sell the property and they would only get paid if you sell the property and after any current lien holder (mortgage company, etc) has been paid. Judgments in Texas are good for 10 years and can be renewed. Collectors "must" be bonded, but not licensed, in Texas to collect. The credit reporting period is 7 years from the first time you became 30 days late and never brought the account current leading to the charge off Keven also mentioned that the collecting SOL in Texas is 4 years, which is true. The SOL starts to run from your last payment or charge made on the account before it was charged off. "Any" payment made to the collector "will not" reset the collecting SOL "unless" you have a written contract to pay. If you are past the collecting SOL then it is up to "you" to utilize that fact by informing the collector the alleged debt is time barred for collecting Or if they sue, to use an affirmative defense of SOL in with your answer. Kevin also mentioned reading the FDCPA, which is an excellent comment. But, never overlook your own states statutes. Texas has their own version of the FDCPA (Texas Finance Code) which is extremely strict, even more than the FTC FDCPA. The TFC also applies to original creditors, the FDCPA does not. For one example of the strictness of the TFC - The FDCPA deems that if a person requests validation/verification from a collector after 30 days had passed from the collectors first contact, the collector does not have to cease collection attempts until they validate/verify. In Texas it does not matter when a person requests validation/verification, the collector "must" cease all collection activities (including filing suit) until they provide the validation/verification "within 30 days" of a persons request (§392.202) Texas Finance Code - http://www.occc.state.tx.us/pages/Legal/Laws/fcode/2005/toc05.html You might also click on my profile and read through some of the links I have listed - to the FDCPA, FCRA, etc. You might also do some reading in the last link I have listed to a free credit discussion board. Start in the newbie forum and then in the credit forum and in the state laws forum. O.T. edit Thanks Kevin. You gave a pretty solid answer with good points, for the most part. You should pop into this section to post answers more often
    a few seconds ago

    Other Answers

    • This is America. We don't have debtor prisons. No one goes to jail for having debt. No matter how large the debt is.

      by halefarmboy - 18 hours ago

    • No no no -- you absolutely cannot ever be arrested or thrown in jail for being delinquent on credit card debt, anywhere in the U.S. Debt collectors will actually sometimes threaten people with this, but they are lying and hoping to scare unsophisticated people. I live in Texas and was formerly a financial advisor here. The worst case scenario from a legal point is that they can sue you -- take you to court and say you owe them money, and hope the judge rules in their favor. This is at worst a CIVIL issue (lawsuit) and NEVER A CRIMINAL ISSUE (jail, arrest). But employing lawyers and going to court is expensive in itself and they're busy hassling lots of people -- so they will probably NOT sue you (but no guarantees). Even if they successfully sue you, the likely remedy from the judge is to work out a wage-garnishment plan that is based on your income and expenses -- which would likely be much better than whatever the debt collector is trying to get you to do -- as they will urge you to foolishly borrow money from relatives, etc. All they want is the money. Key Point: IN TEXAS THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS ON DEBT IS 4 YEARS. If you make it to 4 years after missing a payment, without being sued, then you are home free -- there is no legal recourse for them to collect from you, ever. All in all, most likely the only "punishment" is bad reports to the credit bureaus, damaging your credit report. But even that goes away after 7 years. P.S., hey great information ECHO! Very interesting.

      by KevinStud99 - 18 hours ago

    • No, credit cards debts are considered civil matters and not legal matters. The credit card company can take you to court if they feel like the debt is large enough. But take it from me, a former debtor herself, their threats are nothing. Creditors barks are louder then their bite. It will only ruin your credit.

      by Jasmine - 18 hours ago

    • It's a civil issue, the worst they could do is sue & win a judgement. If they win a judgement, they cannot have your wages garnished in Texas, but they can but a lien on your property. If your job requires a background investigation or a security clearance, this may cause problems, even loosing employment. Dont want to scare you like this but dont get blindsided. You can always negotiate the settlement with the collection agency for pennies on the dollar. But get the settlement in writing and make sure they mark you credit account as settled in full. (f you go that route). If it is your debt, and you can not pay in full, negotiate with them.

      by c0w60y - 18 hours ago

    • u don't go to jail but be careful they will keep calling u to harras u that u owe them and this and that. if i was u i will consult with a lawyer first i know u have to pay the lawyer but talk to a lawyer. they will also keep passing the debt to other collectors cause i have envelopes that belong to my grandmotehr that supposedly she owe's money and they all have different locations that they passed this collections. Talk to a lawyer is my only answer to this ?

      by serrano6550 - 18 hours ago

    • No one goes to jail for unpaid debt, this isn't a Dickens novel. They can haowver obtain a court judgement against you which will allow them to garnish wages and seize assets.

      by douglas l - 18 hours ago

    • I dont know about any sources but I do know from speaking with attorneys, etc that you do NOT go to jail because of any unpaid credit card debt. The credit card company can however file suit on you if a person goes to jail for unpaid credit card debt then the world would be damn near empty and jailhouses FULL

      by Sharon F - 18 hours ago

    • Not in any state, debtors prison went out long long time ago. http://www.ftc.gov/gettingcredit/ What you need to know about your credit.

      by Sgt Big Red - 18 hours ago

    • Eventually you could. First they will turn you over to the credit bureau and your credit will be ruined, then they will turn your debt over to a bill collector, then if you still do not work something out with them, they will file a lawsuit against you, then they will try to arrest you. I believe it applies to all states not just Texas. Don't you think it best to call them and try to get the lowest interest rate and pay them the minimum each month until you get more financially stable. Or you can check out some of those debt relief companies.

      by My Baby! - 18 hours ago

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