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Credit Card Lawsuit FAQ’s

If you have received a summons to appear in court regarding outstanding credit card debt, we understand you may have a lot of questions. This site and our e-book have provided information to thousands of people who were in the process of fighting credit card lawsuits. Below are the answers to questions that many defendants have in regard to credit card lawsuits, as well as, resources you can use to defend yourself against these types of lawsuits.

What is a credit card debt summons?

A summons is a document issued by the court informing the defendant of legal action taken against you and requesting your appearance in court. The summons will state the amount of time the defendant has to answer the complaint.

What is a credit card debt complaint?

The complaint is generally provided along with the summons, and outlines in detail the reason the defendant is being sued. In the case of a credit card lawsuit, the complaint is in regard to a credit card debt owed. In many cases, this debt was not originally owed to the plaintiff who is now suing you.

What happens if I don’t answer my summons?

If you fail to respond to the summons by the time listed, you will lose your case by default. This means that the plaintiff will be entitled to all damages listed in the complaint even if they are incorrect.

How do I answer a summons?

Upon receiving your summons, you must file a notice to appear informing the court that you intend to challenge your lawsuit. It is advised you contact the courthouse handling your lawsuit to confirm the amount of time you have to respond. We also suggest that you fully explore our website. Our site contains a lot of helpful tips and sample court documents to assist you with your lawsuit. Make sure that you read any attached court instructions thoroughly.

Here is a basic outline of the steps involved:

  • Verify how much time you have to reply to your summons.
  • Read and answer the complaint line by line.
  • File a notice to appear along with answers to complaint with the court’s clerk office.
  • File a motion to dismiss in lieu of an answer, if possible.
  • On the same day that you file your answer, mail off discovery documents via certified mail requiring a signature by the Plaintiff.

What other documents do I need to defend myself?

You should also send off your discovery documents which include interrogatories, request for admissions and request for document via certified mail to the creditor and the court clerk within 30 days. For assistance with producing these documents, we suggest you read our Defendant Package e-book.

Does burden of proof lie with defendant of plaintiff?

As with all civil lawsuits, the burden of proof lies with the plaintiff. This means the creditor must prove that you incurred the debt, and that they are legal owners of your debt. Since, often times, the plaintiff is not the original creditor, the creditor suing you may not have all the documentation needed to prove you incurred the debt, or that they are legal owners of your debt.

Do I need a lawyer to defend myself against creditors?

Absolutely not. Many thousands of visitors to our site, and readers of our Defendant Package e-book, have successfully defended themselves against creditors. Lawyers can be very expensive, so we have put together a self-help guide that takes you through the steps needed to defend yourself. We also suggest you fully explore the site for additional defense winning tips.

How do I file a motion to dismiss?

Before filing a motion to dismiss, it is important that you review the complaint filed against you in addition to local court rules regarding statues of limitations. You can also obtain the necessary forms to dismiss your lawsuit from the court clerk’s office.

Walk me through the process of a credit card lawsuit?

Below is a basic outline of the steps involved in a credit card debt lawsuit:

  • Complaint/summons
    • The complaint states the causes of action and all of the facts that control the outcome if the facts/law can be proven.

  • Answer
    • Each complaint is answered one allegation at a time by admitting to or denying each allegation individually.

  • Flurry of Motions
    • Motion to dismiss.
    • Motion for summary judgment.
    • Motion to strike.

  • Discovery
    • Request for admission.
    • Request for production.
    • Interrogatories
    • Depositions.
    • Court orders.

  • Trial (should it get this far)
    • Formal presentation of facts are made.
    • Law is used to determine the winner pursuant to rules and evidence.

Additional Credit Card Debt Collection Questions

What is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)?

The FDCPA stands for Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, which is an act created to eradicate and eliminate abusive practices in the collection of consumer debts. Created in 1978, this federal law can protect you by regulating the conduct of bill collectors harassing you about credit card debt. You can get more information about it here

What is a debt validation letter?

It tells the collection agency that you are not denying this alleged debt, but are challenging it. It asks them to list all the information that they have against you and the alleged debt. If the creditor fails to provide you with this information, you will be able to counter-sue them for violation of the FDCPA. Most importantly, if they don’t respond, this may also indicate that a creditor does not have the documentation required to win a judgment against you. You can find more information about Debt Validation Letters here.

What does a debt validation letter do?

Once a collection agency receives this letter, they must stop reporting the alleged debt to the credit reporting agencies. As a precaution, you should also contact credit reporting agencies to inform them you have sent a debt validation letter. Click here for more information

Who is LVNV Funding?

LVNV is a collection agency that specializes in recovering debt from consumers. The company is known for buying outdated consumer debts and using techniques like harassing phone calls, threatening letters, and legal proceedings.

Who is Midland Funding?

Midland Funding is essentially one of the biggest ‘junk debt buyers’ in the country. Midland Funding buys credit accounts that are in default (and considered noncollectable) for pennies on the dollar with the goal of collecting funds from the account holder.

What should or shouldn’t I do when dealing with debt collectors?

  • Never speak with debt collectors over the phone.

  • Keep a paper trail by communicating with them in writing.

  • Never give a debt collection agency any of your banking information. They will use it to collect the entire debt regardless of any agreement you may have made.

  • When paying off a debt, be sure to get a signed agreement that the debt will be removed from your credit report.