Question

I was served papers for an overdure credit card?

Okay so I got served papers for an outstanding credit card debit.

The balance is now $6,000, but the credit limit qas $2,000. I had called the company several times to try and set up a payment plan but they were unwilling to take anything less than $500 a month and I can not afford that.
It looks like the papers were filed in January, but I am only now getting them.
In addition there is no court date on the papers, it just says that I need to responnd in 30 days with an official letter.
What should I do?
I live in CA. This credit card was opened in 2003 when I was18 the limit was $2000 I spent the entire balance in a few months and only made 2 payments in 2003. After that I was sent to collections, and have not paid on the balance since. I have received letters from the collection agency, but when I call to settle or make payments the refused to take anything less than 500 a month so of the $6000 they say I owe $4000 is just in interest I really only spent $2000

6 years ago - 13 answers

Best Answer

Chosen by Asker

IF your last charge or payment on the account was in 2003 then you are past the collecting SOL for your state.
If that is so, then you need to include an Affirmative Defense of SOL in with your answer.

California SOL Statute:

Open Acct.: Reduced to writing-
Written Contract: §337
Within four years:
1. An action upon any contract, obligation or liability founded upon an instrument in writing, except as provided in Section 336a of this code;
2. An action to recover
(1) upon a book account whether consisting of one or more entries;
(2) upon an account stated based upon an account in writing, but the acknowledgment of the account stated need not be in writing;
(3) a balance due upon a mutual, open and current account, the items of which are in writing; provided, however, that where an account stated is based upon an account of one item, the time shall begin to run from the date of said item, and where an account stated is based upon an account of more than one item, the time shall begin to run from the date of the last item.


If you are past SOL and use a SOL defense, you might also consider filing counterclaims under both the FTC's FDCPA and your states version of the FDCPA..


An example of your states FDCPA:

81. In Kimber v.Federal Financial Corp.(M.D.Ala.1987)668 F.Supp.1480, the court held that it is "unfair " within the meaning of the federal statute to file a time-barred collection suit against a consumer,and that it is a deceptive act to even threaten to file such a suit.


You need to read and use your states Rules of Civil Procedure (RCP) as a guide when writing up your answer.

If you don't feel like you can handle writing and filing the answer on your own, you might speak with an attorney who specializes in consumer credit. (if you cannot find one, you might go to naca.net and look for one in your area)
Some lawyers will give a free first consult so you can see where you stand, ask about that when you call.

If you want to handle it on your own, you might go to a local public or law library and read the Nolo Press Books.
Also, click on my profile and click on the link I've provided for the FTC FDCPA.
You might also click on the last link I have listed to a free credit discussion board. Do some reading in the Newbie Forum and then in the Credit Forum. You will be able to find more information concerning the laws for your state and fed laws, see how others have handled writing up their answers to suits, etc. Feel free to ask any questions you may have.

6 years ago

Other Answers

Who were the papers served by?

by Jon Hall from Cuy. Falls OH - 6 years ago

Respond or go to jail? Ask a lawyer.

by bokie318 - 6 years ago

Contact an attorney that specializes in bankruptcy or credit matters.

by canes77 - 6 years ago

Are you working? It's possible that your wages are going to be garnished. Be prepared for that.

by Micki - 6 years ago

they dont sound like court papers...there just trying to frighten you into paying $500 a month...bin it.

by desert camel - 6 years ago

Respond in less than 30 days. You owe the debt and they'll probably take a judgement against you. Which is serious. It effects your credit for a long time. With judgements they can garnish your wages. You obviously don't understand how credit cards are suppose to work. Your the type of person who is a high-risk customer. And continuing in the bad financial behavior will make it harder and harder to get a car, home, credit cards, etc.

by meg420c - 6 years ago

you should get a lawyer, you can always contact one usually for free. The first visit is free so they can get your business. However if you don't use them then you will at least know what to do next

by stlgirl - 6 years ago

Why did they let you get $4K over your limit? Looks like they will eventually be taking you to court. A judgement will be filed against you and your wages will be garnished until the debt is settled. Your only option is to go to court or pay off the card with a loan or cash. I doubt the $4K is accrued interest, but if it is, a good lawyer will get that waived since its above the agreed upon credit limit and you should only really owe $2K - if thats only interest.

by cbjr - 6 years ago

These people are not screwing around. They could care less why you have failed to make your payments as promised, If these are not official court papers, then the officail ones will show up soon enough. if it goes to court they will sue for the whole amount and have your wages guarnished. That is embarrassing.

Call them and talk with them. They will work out a payment plan but they wont settle for small payments.

If the original mount was for 2000 then they will probably settle for that if you can swing it.

by Jay L - 6 years ago

Were you officially served papers by a sheriff (or another official) coming to your residence where you had to sign for the papers? You can't serve someone by sending them a letter with a 43 cent stamp.

Debt collectors love to scare people with implying that they are taking them to court. It's hard to tell but this may be a scare tactic. I would start by responding like this:

Send them a letter via Certified Mail + Return Receipt stating:

Per the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, I am requesting
written validation of this alleged debt

Per the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, I would like to know the name(s) of the attorneys on your end who would be initiating any legal actions against me. I am requesting to know their full names and their license # in the state bar association.

Source(s)

by Slimick - 6 years ago

First, were the papers served by the original credit card company? if so then the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act DOES NOT apply to major credit card banks? It applies only to the collection attorneys and professional debt collection companies they might hire. Original creditors are regulated by state law; however, the major credit card companies follow policies that closely mirror those of the FDCPA and will comply with your request to stop phoning you at home and work, etc., just as if you were dealing with a collection service. If you believe you have been harassed by an original creditor, or that the original creditor has done something illegal or threatening towards you, then research your state laws on the subject and contact the proper authorities to file a formal complaint. Typically, the Attorney General in your state is the proper authority to contact.

Second, if the papers are from some third party collection agency, you might want to check the following web site to see if they are listed there;
www.budhibbs.com/drowning_in_debt.h...

As Slimick stated, papers are not served via a stamp. Some agencies will send bogus letters to intimidate people. If they are legitimate, then their should be the court listed on papers, if it is, call the court clerk to verify authenticity.

Hope this answers your question
LEGAL DISCLAIMER: The advice contained herein is for informational purposes only. It is not to be construed as Legal Counsel nor Legal Advice.

by Sgt Big Red - 6 years ago

Bokie's response sounds like a debt collector. slimquick gave a great answer same with the sgt. This sounds like a junk debt buyer inflaiting this amount. Do us a favor send another answer giving the following detail on this debt.
When was the last payment made on this
What state did you live in at the time the debt took place
What state do you currently live in.
reason for this is to determine when the SOL is up. yes seeing a consumer rights attorney may be wise with this very high amount

by bryan l - 6 years ago