Debt collection agencies are tricky groups, to put it nicely. They buy
up debts from major credit card companies and banks at minimal value,
all in hopes of being able to turn a profit by collecting from the debtor
through different means. Oftentimes, these means feel like nothing short
The usual go-to protocol for a collection agency is to hire a lawyer –
if they don’t already have one on staff – and have them file
a suit against you, which ultimately creates a court summon. Now, if you
are like most everyone else, the summons is going to be confusing because
it will be from a company you have
never heard of before. You had credit card debt with MasterCard or Visa, not
whoever this is, right? Regardless if you recognize the name or not, you
will want to show up to court for official summons.
This is where you can take the advantage.
Four Words Every Creditor Hates
When you arrive at court, the collection agency will probably be surprised
you came at all. An estimated 85% of all summons go unanswered, allowing
the agency to win by default. A lawyer representing the collection company
will give you a sheet of paper that looks suspiciously like a credit card
statement but is actually
not a credit card statement. As a disclaimer at the top will likely state,
it is just an account summary of what you allegedly owe to this new collection
company. To repeat, this is not necessarily what you owed your original
creditor. What’s more, there is unlikely to be any math or explanation
as to how they got this number.
Here is your chance for success. “Show me the evidence.” Press
the attorney for any official documentation that shows your actual debt,
not the account summary form. If and when they cannot produce it, bring
the lack of evidence to the attention of the court judge. In so many cases,
this is the end of the hardship, and the collection agency will drop the case.
Why Evidence is So Important in Debt Collection
More often than not, when a credit card company or bank sells an IOU to
a collection agency, they only provide your name and how much you owe.
Specifics are withheld either due to confidentiality or mere oversight.
Without solid proof that shows
how your debt came to be, the number means nothing to a judge. The truth really
is that collection agencies are largely banking on people not showing
up to court and automatically conceding to their claims.
If you have questions about your rights as a debtor in New York –
or if you have been summoned or harassed by a debt collection agency –
get into contact with Lebedin Kofman LLP right away. Our New York debt lawyers can give you the counsel you need
to seek an amicable and fair solution to your situation. Call
888.605.2705 to request a
free consultation now.