I am an experienced credit card collection defense attorney who is a former retail credit card collection attorney. I am often asked in my practice what people being sued by credit card companies or purchased debt buyers can do when they are sued. A credit card company will usually eventually file a credit card collection lawsuit to collect the delinquent balance.
The credit card company or purchased debt buyer is hoping you will not respond to the lawsuit within the 30 day period provided after you are served with the complaint. They want the quick uncontested default judgment so they can place a lien on your property, garnish your wages and levy your bank account. It is critically important that you hire an experienced collection defense attorney who has handled credit card cases to respond to the complaint for you and require the credit card company to prove their case.
The following things should be explored in discovery after you have filed an answer to the complaint:
1. The existence of a credit card agreement between you and the credit card company. In the event of a debt buyer who has purchased the credit account they will also have to show the specific assignment of this account from the original credit card company to them (including all owners of the debt in between) The failure of the credit card company or its successor to prove this may provide a defense to the lawsuit;
2. The credit card company or its successor debt buyer will also have to establish the terms of the credit account and show that it is delinquent by establishing the principal balance owed and how they arrived at it. This is very difficult for many purchased credit card debt buyers to do as they usually do not have access to good media including credit card statements;
3. Additionally, if the statute of limitations is asserted as a defense, the credit card company or the purchased debt buyer will need to establish activity on the card (actual purchase or an actual payment) or a breach of the card member agreement by your failure to pay the credit card when first obligated to do so.
These defenses and others may exist in your case. Please contact the Law Office of Kevin S. Sullivan to discuss your credit card lawsuit and aggressively defending it today. The Law Office of Kevin S. Sullivan handles the defense of credit card lawsuits in San Francisco, San Mateo, Marin, Contra Costa, Alameda and Santa Clara Counties.