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Dealing with debt collector lawsuits

Ohio residents who encounter debt may be interested in ways to deal with debt collector lawsuits. According to the Federal Trade Commission, about 60 to 95 percent of debtors who are sued never show up in court. This may result in a default judgment against the debtor.

An overwhelming percentage of default judgments in many states result from these types of lawsuits. Since a default judgment remains on a credit report for up to seven years after it is entered, the best practice is not to ignore them. When a debtor receives notice they are being sued, it may be beneficial to consult with an attorney to see what needs to be done. If that is not possible, checking the court's online site may help. An appearance in court is usually required, and that may be seen advantageously by the court. Not being present when the case is heard may make it easier for the debt collector to win, even if the consumer debt has already expired or has been paid.

Since debt collectors often go to court without paperwork proving the debt is real, the debtor may be able to have the case dismissed by asking for proof. Debt collectors frequently have erroneous or no information when the court looks to them to provide it. If that happens, the court may dismiss the case against the debtor.

Some financial challenges such as demanding proof of debt may be won. However, many times, debtors try to pay off debt by making minimum payments each month and being unable to catch up. When debt becomes overwhelming, speaking to an attorney may be beneficial. The attorney may offer insight into options such as bankruptcy that might discharge debt and allow the individual to start over.

Source: FOX Business, "These 2 Words Could Get You Out of Paying a Debt", September 08, 2014

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