What to do if a Debt Collector Sues or Contacts You
Sued by a Debt Collector?
If a debt collector is suing you, it can actually be a good thing. Debt collectors rarely have the proper paperwork or chain of title from creditor and they will make a better financial deal with you than the original creditor can. Either way, you may owe the debt, but the odds are you don’t owe the debt to a collector or debt buyer that is suing you. As about 90% of people don't answer lawsuits, debt collectors file complaints without the right documents or proof because the odds favor them getting a default and avoiding scrutiny of the lawsuit paperwork. Don't let them get away with this.
Here Are Four Things You Can Do When Sued By a Debt Collector:
First, identify the day and date you were sued. You have 21 days to Answer the lawsuit if they served you in person, 28 days to Answer the lawsuit if they served you through the mail. You don't want to default (where you fail to answer after the 21/28 days and they automatically win). Answering the lawsuit increases the chances of a discount in what you owe as the collector does not want to put money into the case and hurt the bottom line. Answering protects you and saves you money.
Second, always check that the debt collector or collection law firm has sued you in the right district. Look at the top of the lawsuit or complaint. There will be an identification of the court you are being sued in. Do you live in the area that the district court serves or presides over? If you don't live in that district, suing you in that court is a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and Michigan law. You can sue the law firm for violating your rights and seek money damages on top of our suing the creditor in a counter claim for money damages.
Third, don't engage the debt collector in working out a payment plan until you have answered the lawsuit. Debt collectors will string you along while pretending to work out a deal with you and then when the 21 days has passed, they will get a default against you. Then, you have nothing to bargain with and you are defaulted for the whole debt. So, contact us to get an Answer done for you and we can negotiate from strength and keep the collector honest. This is especially true if they broke collection laws pursuing you.
Fourth, while you may owe on the debt, there is no proof that you owe the debt collector that is suing you. Make them prove they own the debt. Fill out our Free Evaluation form and email or fax us the lawsuit and any exhibits. With the right case, we will defend you and sue them for money damages against the collector for bringing a lawsuit without proof. If they don't own it, you don't owe it to them.