Houslanger and Associates is a common debt collection law firm in New York. They are retained often by debt-buyer creditors such as Palisades Acquisition, Rushmore Recoveries, and even private student loan creditors such as National Collegiate Student Loan Trust. Houslanger will sue clients and frequently obtain default judgments against consumers and small businesses. A judgment ultimately leads to a bank levy, wage garnishment and or a lien on real property while 9% judgment interest accrues often increasing the amount of the debt by double or more. To protect yourself against Houslanger follow these steps:
- Submit an answer with defenses if you are served with a summons and complaint. This keeps the burden on the plaintiff to produce evidence showing that they are the rightful owner of the debt and that the amount is appropriate.
- Request discovery. This forces the creditor to actually produce the proof discussed above. If they do not have it or lack much of it then the case can potentially be dismissed.
- File a Motion for Summary Judgment if the creditor lacks the evidence to prove their case. A motion for summary judgment asks the judge to dismiss the matter in your favor because there is enough proof to decide the case by the judge alone at that point preventing the case from moving forward toward trial. This is common in debt-buyer matters where debt-buyers such as Palisades and Rushmore Recoveries cannot show a proper bill of sale and chain of assignment of the debt. In other words, they cannot prove that they properly acquired or purchased the debt.
- Negotiate a settlement alternatively using the leverage obtained by using the steps above. Debt-buyers will frequently authorize Houslanger and Associates to settle these matter for 50%-75% off of the entire amount. However, the litigation described above is crucial in obtaining the necessary leverage to do so.