Answers to Your Questions
Is there anything that can be done to defend against a credit card lawsuit?Credit card lawsuits can not only be successfully defended against in many cases, but frequently I can turn the tables on them. These collection agencies can be sued for their illegal actions and end up paying you for their abuses. The important thing is to not give up and to fight for your rights which is what I am here to assist you with.
What if I do owe the money, can they still keep calling me?When money is factually owed, it does not mean that a bill collector is allowed to intimidate, threaten or abuse you in any way. They still have to follow the FDCPA guidelines and can be held financially accountable if they don't.
Shouldn't I just pay what they are asking for and be done with it?
This would not be my recommendation to a client for many reasons. Collection companies frequently have incorrect information on the debt that is owed and may try to add charges to the amount that are not correct. They may attempt to collect on debts that are beyond the statute of limitations or that have already been resolved.
At times, paying a debt does not make it all go away. Collectors buy old debts, even ones that should no longer be paid or that are not owed, and then use various methods to try to get you to pay once again. These "zombie debts" keep coming back when they should have died long ago. When we talk, I can go over how these debts can be put to rest once and for all.
I'm already having a hard time paying my debts, how can I afford an attorney?There are several answers to this very important question. First, I don't charge to consult about debt collection abuse and harassment cases. If you and I, working as a team, decide to take on your case, I can represent you in a lawsuit against the abusive collection company. If the case is won, the collection agency will be responsible for my attorney fees. The collection agency can also be required to pay the costs and expenses relating to litigation.
I don't know what my rights are; can you give examples of abusive actions that are illegal?
Items that credit collectors are not allowed to do include, but are not limited to:
- Calling third parties such as friends, family and neighbors in order to collect a debt
- Constantly calling you or calling you before or after acceptable times of the morning or night
- Calling your place of work after they have been told not to
- Using profane, obscene, insulting, loud or threatening language towards you
- Threatening lawsuits, wage garnishment or arrest for not having paid a debt
- Calling your cell phone without permission
- Make false statements of threats in order to get you to pay
- Continuing to call you after they have been informed you are represented by a lawyer
Is there anything that I should be doing to help my case?
The first step is to call me for a free consultation on your case and a review of what the collectors have been doing. Meanwhile, make detailed notes of any conversations you've had with bill collectors. Save all voice mails and phone messages!
This is vital to your case. It is illegal in our state to record calls without the person's permission but you can retain your messages. Finally, save copies of all letters and notices you have received from these agencies. This is the type of information I need to proceed with legal actions to stop the harassment.
I've heard I can sue a collection company for abuse, is that correct?The FDCPA allows consumers who have been victims of collection abuses to sue the collection agency. When abuses have occurred, the common outcome of these lawsuits is that the collection company will have to pay you for their harassment plus my attorney fees. If you have been hurt by the actions of the bill collectors, you may be able to recover damages as well.
Can anything be done to stop credit collection harassment?
Yes, in 1977 the U.S. Congress enacted the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) to protect consumers just like you from abuse and harassment by collection agencies. This law provides exact guidelines as to how collection agencies must conduct themselves which, amongst many other things, means you should be treated with dignity and respect.
Attorney Forbes takes great pride in enforcing these laws on behalf of clients and as a Philadelphia debt collection harassment lawyer, is able to aggressively apply the FDCPA to protect consumer's rights.
What should I do if I am being threatened with a Foreclosure Action?
First, you must take action to defend it. The last thing you want to do is ignore it. If you do nothing, this would allow the mortgage company to file a judgment and schedule a sheriff sale. In a lawsuit, the mortgage company must be able to supply certain facts to show that they even have a right to sue you in foreclosure.
They must prove that they are the current mortgage company and that they are in possession of a valid promissory note. They also must be able to provide an accurate loan history. They cannot always do this. We know how to challenge the mortgage company on these issues. You are not always on the losing end of these actions. What you really need, if you are facing a foreclosure lawsuit, is to gather as much information as possible, so you can make choices about how to defend yourself. I invite you to call my office and discuss it with me in detail.
My mortgage company is no longer accepting my payments. What will happen next?
The mortgage company will send you an ACT 91 Notice informing you of the past due amount required to cure the alleged default. If you pay this amount they have to start accepting payments. The notice will inform you of your right to credit counseling along with a list of approved credit counseling services in your area.
You should also send the mortgage company a letter called a Qualified Written Request. Please feel free to contact my office and we can share a sample letter with you and explain what this actually means to you.
What should I do if I am being sued by National Collegiate Student Loan Trust?Recently, a large number of lawsuits have been filed by an entity called National Collegiate Student LoanTrust, LLC. My office has been contacted by several people who have been finding themselves on the receiving end of these actions. While researching, we have discovered that these cases are filled with legal problems, resulting in valid defenses.