If you are drowning in credit card debt but you want to avoid filing a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 case, we can help you discover the wide variety of defenses that may be available to you. It is imperative that you contact us as soon as possible because there is a strict deadline for submitting these defenses or they will be deemed to have been waived. Below are a few examples of defenses that may be available to you in a debt collection lawsuit:
- Improper service. The law requires a creditor to follow strict requirements when serving you with a lawsuit. If you can establish that service of process to you was invalid, it is a valid defense.
- Statute of limitations. A credit card company has a deadline for filing the lawsuit to collect the debt from you. If the statute of limitations for collecting the debt has expired, the lawsuit can be dismissed.
- Standing. It is common for credit card debt to be sold to debt collectors or debt buyers, so it is also common for the supporting loan documentation to not get transferred properly. In other words, if the creditor cannot prove that it owes the debt, the lawsuit can be dismissed.
- Discharge. If you filed a prior Chapter 7 of Chapter 13 bankruptcy case and included the collector’s debt in your filing and it was discharged by the court, the collection lawsuit is prohibited.
- Identity fraud. If your identity was stolen or the debt does not belong to you, it can be a valid defense.
- Accounting error. If you can prove that the plaintiff has sued you for an incorrect amount, you have a valid defense. This may include the creditor failing to properly apply your payments or charging fees you do not owe.
- Abusive tactics. If a debt collector that has illegally harassed you or been abusive in its attempts to collect the debt from you, you can file a counterclaim seeking to recover monetary damages.
If you are interested in learning more about defending a collection lawsuit, contact one of our seasoned bankruptcy attorneys to schedule your appointment.