Calls, texts, emails, and lawsuits from a debt collector are something that all debtors fear. However, these are more common than you realize. Debt collectors may use language that can cause fear, but you still have rights under FDCPA. Knowing your rights and learning more about what collectors can and cannot do is important.
You may face a lawsuit if you do not make the payments on time. When you receive the notice, you may panic and not know what to do. By understanding what steps you can take to defend yourself legally, you can make a huge difference. click here to know more.
Tips for handling a lawsuit from a debt collector
- Respond to the debt collector.
Receiving texts and calls from a debt collector who is threatening to sue or has already sued you can be tempting. However, this is an even more dangerous thing to do. Not only will avoidance not solve the problems but it will make the collector even angrier. Furthermore, if you ignore these calls, you will not be able to know if the debt is actually yours.
- Challenge the company’s legal right to sue.
One way to defend yourself is by challenging the company’s right to sue. It may be possible that the debt has already been sold to another entity. The party suing you must provide proof that they still own the debt and have the right to sue you. The plaintiff must provide the following documentation:
- A credit agreement that you have signed.
- Documentation of the chain of custody of all paperwork.
- Use Burden of Proof to your advantage
One thing you must keep in mind is that the burden of proof falls on the creditor suing you and not on you. You can legally ask for evidence if you believe you do not owe any money. Ask the creditor for documentation proving that you actually owe money, the amount, and information about the original creditor. However, if the party suing you had bought the debt from the original creditor, they may not be able to produce adequate proof.
- Speak to an attorney.
Perhaps the smartest thing you can do is hire an attorney before even responding to the lawsuit. Most people do not have the necessary knowledge regarding debt collection laws and practices, which puts them in a vulnerable position. An attorney can tell you when a debt collector has violated your rights under the FDCPA and provide a viable defense.
An attorney can also tell you if the collector even has the right to sue you. Debtors make various common mistakes in such a scenario, all of which an attorney can protect you from.