Being Sued for Old Credit Card Debt
Most banks will charge-off your account after you have not made a payment after 180 days. Check your credit report and you will see “charge-off”.
If you are lucky, the bank that you opened the credit card with won’t send your account to their in-house collections department. If you have not been sued by the bank within two years of your last payment, consider yourself lucky to an extent. The bank will then in turn put your account along with hundreds of others into a debt portfolio and sell that off to a 3rd party collection agency which is better known as the dreaded junk debt buyer.
Another year or so may go by, maybe even more, and all of a sudden you start to get phone calls and collection notices in the mail from the junk debt buyer who bought your account from the bank that you were unable to pay. That is where it begins. Some people will choose to send a debt validation letter and are surprised to receive an answer. They are even more surprised to receive the summons that comes along with it. Other people will ignore the collection letters and phone calls and receive a summons within a month of that collection agency snooping around your credit report.
Regardless of what you do, these guys want your money. They have only paid pennies for your account and want to cash in the thousands of dollars they are going to make off of your lawsuit. You will see the amount you owe them plus interest and even attorney fees tacked on. If the debt is time barred, they don’t care. They just want their money. Junk debt buyers are connected to collection attorneys in almost every single state in the nation, so it doesn’t matter where you live, they will find someone to sue you.
I’d rather be sued by a junk debt buyer over old credit card debt than be sued by an original creditor for almost new credit card debt, because the older the credit card debt is, the harder it is to prove in a court of law. Junk debt buyers will have a really hard time trying to come up with all the documents to win in court so shoot for a default judgment.
If you are being sued for old credit card debt and it is within the statute of limitations to collect, this should be an open and shut case for you if you know what you are doing. The chances are that these junk debt buyers will not have any credit card statements, contract, cardholders agreement, and will simply rely on a poorly written affidavit signed by one of their employees.
If your old credit card debt is time barred and you are 100% sure of that, start digging for proof. Try and find the last check you made out to the original creditor. If you made payments online, check your old bank statements because those payments will show up on your statements. Also, check your credit report and see what date is listed on there as your last payment. You can also use the statute of limitations as an affirmative defense and get your answers through the discovery phase of your lawsuit.