Are you being sued over an alleged old debt you might not even remember by a company you definitely do not recognize by name? If so, there is a good possibility that this Plaintiff is what is also known as a debt buyer. A debt buyer is a company that does not sell goods, loan money, or does not do anything else really useful. They just buy up portfolios of charged-off credit card accounts and other old debts, frequently for pennies on the dollar, and attempt to collect. They will file lawsuits in court, often with little or no supporting documentation to prove up their case. However, if you do not protect yourself and answer the lawsuit, the debt buyer is automatically awarded the case, and you lose by a default judgment. If you try to represent yourself, you will be going against a lawyer on the other side that is well versed in litigation procedures and the various court formalities and deadlines that apply.
Here is a point to ponder. The State of Texas has a number of laws that help protect all consumers in lawsuits such as these. One such law is the requirement that all third party debt collectors post a $10,000 bond with the Secretary of State. If they have not done so they are barred from collecting, and subject to a counterclaim with statutory damages. Generally speaking, a third party “debt collector” is either an entity collecting on another entity’s behalf, or an entity that has acquired a debt after default (when you stop paying). This does not apply to original lenders such as Citibank, Discover, etc. That said, if you do not answer the lawsuit you will still be subject to a default judgment.
If you are being sued over a debt by a Plaintiff that you have never done business with, please do not hesitate to call me immediately. Please seek legal counsel anytime you are served, or suspect that you may have been served with legal process.