We were retained by a consumer who had received a wage garnishment notice for a recent judgment that had been entered against her for a private student loan owned by National Collegiate Student Loan Trust and represented by the debt collection law firm of Forster and Garbus. Our client had tried to negotiate a settlement with Forster and Garbus on her own before she was sued, but she felt overwhelmed and pressured by the process. When she was sued, she called Forster and Garbus and was falsely assured that they would be able to reach an agreement and that she would not have to worry about submitting an answer to defend herself. By not submitting an answer, a default judgment was obtained against the client. Shortly thereafter she received the garnishment notice and was stunned as to the deceptive measures taken by the debt collector.
After receiving the wage garnishment notice, she knew she needed professional assistance from our firm. When we contacted Forster & Garbus about the account, they initially gave us a hard time about resolving the matter due to the representations our client made when she was negotiating with them directly. This is a common issue we face because clients make statements that they do not realize may actually work against them, and as all collectors says, "any information obtained will be used for the purpose of [debt collection]." Despite this hurdle, we were able to stop the garnishment, have the judgment vacated, and reduce the settlement amount to $18,900 on a balance of $44,046.68.