When a debt goes to collections, it means the original creditor has enlisted a collection agency to assist them in retrieving the owed funds. These agencies have a strict list of rules that limit their behavior. One thing they cannot do is threaten to sue unless they intend to do so. As such, when a debt collector says they will file a lawsuit against you, you may not believe them. However, when served papers, you must know what to do. Luckily, the following blog and a Los Angeles, California debt defense lawyer can help you navigate these complex situations.
Is It Possible for a Debt Collector to File a Lawsuit Against Me?
In some instances, a creditor will file a lawsuit against a debtor for the funds they are owed. Though the FDCPA says it’s a violation to threaten a lawsuit, this is only if the collector does not intend to follow through. Additionally, there is nothing prohibiting a collector from suing a debtor so long as they have taken all necessary steps before filing.
There is no set timeline of when a collector will file a suit against you, though most will wait six months before doing so. This is so they can send you official notices that you are late or missing payments.
What Should I Do if I’m Sued?
If served papers informing you that a collector has filed a lawsuit against you for an owed debt, it’s important to proceed carefully. You should not, under any circumstances, ignore the lawsuit. If you do, the judge will likely issue a default order against you for the full amount you owe the collect and interest, if that’s requested by the plaintiff. Failure to respond will also likely result in your bank account being frozen and your wages garnished to repay the collector their award. In some instances, the court may place a lien on your property.
As such, the first thing you should do is immediately contact an attorney. Though you may think you can handle this on your own, debt lawsuits are incredibly complex, and ensuring you retain competent legal representation is crucial to receiving the best possible outcome for these circumstances.
An attorney can help you navigate this legal process by examining the details of your case to craft an effective legal strategy. Unfortunately, if a default order is issued against you, you may find it’s much more challenging to overturn than to fight the initial suit in court.
When served with a lawsuit, it can be incredibly overwhelming. However, you can rely on the team at LA Legal Solutions to help you navigate these complex times. Our team will do everything we can to help you fight these charges to receive the best possible outcome. When you need help, we’re here. Contact us today to learn more.