How To Respond To A Summons For Credit Card Debt

So, you’ve just been served with a summons or complaint by your credit card company or debt collection agency. What’s next? Do you know that an estimated 95 percent of credit card lawsuits result in default judgments in favor of lenders? Why? That’s because of the simple tragedy that they fail to respond to the summons!

If you’re reading this post, you’re about to be the minority 5% who are not deterred by the lawsuit, and are looking for a win. But first, let’s focus on answering the summons. Here’s a guide on how you should respond:


Don’t Waste Time On Debt Validation

If you’ve received the lawsuit, there is no point in wasting time on a debt validation letter. You may be under the impression that sending this letter will halt the lawsuit altogether, but that is far from the truth. While it is essential to ensure that the collection firm or junk debt buyer does have the right to collect the debt, spending too much time on it could be detrimental. You have about 20-30 days to respond to the summons, and you simply can’t afford to wait. Let’s get right to it!


Summons & Complaints

The lawsuit documentation you receive will consist of the Summons and the Complaint. Here’s what you need to take a look at:

  • A document that informs of you of your court date
  • A validating certificate that you have been served
  • A form to answer the complaint, along with instructions
  • Evidence as offered by the plaintiff. It may consist of affidavits, transaction accounts and documents from the original creditor. You’ll notice that the information provided will be scarce and insufficient
  • A list of allegations against you as a debtor. This is the Complaint statement.

The Complaint

Typically, a Compliant is a legal document with facts and legal reasons where the plaintiff claims that you are guilty of certain deeds. Most complaints would look like this:

Allegation 1 – Plaintiff’s name & address

Allegation 2- Defendant’s name & address

Allegation 3 – Defendant obtained credit card from XYZ Company


Answering The Summons & Complaint

The document that will compose your response is called the “answer”. As you can see, complaints are usually enumerated. And so, it is important that your answer should be enumerated, matching each of the complaint number. Some of the general responses that you will make may be one of the below three:

  • Affirm
  • Deny
  • Lack of sufficient knowledge to admit or deny

In addition to this, you can also make counter claims and cross claims, providing additional support. To get a deeper understanding, take a look at this sample answer to summons.