You are far behind on your monthly credit card payments and now the letters threatening legal action are starting to come almost every day. Or, worse, you answer your phone and on the other end is a debt collector that you never heard of telling you that you owe thousands of dollars on a credit card that you haven’t used for years. Or, worse, you pick up your paycheck one day only to find that the city marshall has garnished a good chunk of it because you didn't show up at a court hearing you didn't know about regarding to a credit card that you never had.
How I Can Help
As your attorney, the first thing I will do for you is make sure you understand that you should not say anything if you are contacted by a creditor, a debt collector or their lawyer. Don’t tell them anything except my name and phone number. Just as in criminal law, in the field of law known as debt settlement anything you say can and will be used against you. The key word here is “will.” It’s a certainty.
The next thing I will do is check the state court database and find out what is the status of the debt settlement action. If the creditor or debt collector has not filed court papers yet, we may just wait them out and see if the documents they file with the court are legally sufficient. On the other hand, if you wish to go ahead and try to settle for a lesser amount than they claim you owe, I will give them a call and try to work things out informally.
If a court proceeding has been commenced, I can still try to work out a settlement informally, but at the same time I will file a timely answer to the complaint they filed with the court and we will fight them on such issues as standing (if they are not the original creditor, have they proven their right to bring this action?) and personal jurisdiction (can they show that they properly served you with the court papers?)
We will be in this together, but we will have federal, state and local laws to back us up. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Exempt Income Protection Act, the 2011 Treasury Rules governing seizure of bank accounts, and all the relevant provisions of New York State and New York City law will all be in our corner. Call me for a free consultation to learn more.