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Trying to buy time, any idea on how long it takes to be sued?

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  • Trying to buy time, any idea on how long it takes to be sued?

    I stopped paying on all accounts last summer knowing that I had zero choice but to file down the road. I won't go into all the reasons but they center around medical payments (like many).

    Anyways I have been getting hounded of course by calls from these companies (capital one the most). Only a few companies put my accounts into collection just in the past month. Although I have heard (correct me if I am wrong) that Capital One and Discover keep there collections "in house" and attempt to collect on their own. So I am trying to figure out a time table of how long I might have before I get sued. I am 100% sure I will be filing eventually (trying to save up the money) and I know even if garnishments started that a filing with suspend everything (so I am not too freaked out).

    What is your guys experience with the collection process? Most of my debt resides with Capital One, Discover and Syncrony. Then I have a sprinkle of med bills and some store accounts. As mentioned it's been about 4-5 months of non-payment.

    I appreciate the help!

  • #2
    I have heard that Discover and Capital One are the two most litigious creditors, and I have heard of people being sued by these companies for debts as low as $1000. In my personal experience, out of all my tens of thousands of dollars of debt that I defaulted on, Discover was the only one who sued. Everyone else "wrote off" the debt and sold the accounts to junk debt buyers.

    My Discover card had a $3000 limit, and was not maxed out at the time of default. By the time they sued some 3 and a half years later, the balance had ballooned to $6800, and the eventual judgment was for $8800. They attempted to levy my bank account, which had less than $100 at the time, got nothing, and within two weeks, I filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

    I did not have any debt with Capital One, so I can't comment on how quickly they will come after you. Also, I did not own any property--no vehicles or real estate, and had been fired from the job which was listed on my credit reports, so that may have deterred a lot of collection activity. Certainly, I would expect them to come after you a lot sooner than 3 and a half years if you own a house, or have a good job which your creditors know about.

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    • #3
      Thanks for responding bcohen!

      When you get sued will an attorney contact you with a letter, or do you have a sheriff show up with a summons? Possibly at your work? I am not sure how this process works, but was hoping I would receive a registered letter with a "dispute by date" and then some kind of deadline (which would initiate myself to immediately file. That way I would know if I at least had 30 days longer.

      I do know (correct me if I am wrong) at any sign of "court" stuff that you can file and within days get a case number and shut all of that down mid-process.

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      • #4
        It really depends on the creditor and/or the collection agency. Discover sued me super-quick, probably within a couple months of default. They were also aggressive in domesticating the judgment when I moved out of state.

        As for being served, that varies from court to court. In both states where I lived, service by mail was considered acceptable. In one district all I got was a postcard that said "You have been named a defendant in a lawsuit in ______ county court, case number blah blah blah" with a date to appear.
        This post does not constitute legal advice. If you use this advice instead of that of a lawyer, God help you.
        Filed CH 7: 5/11/17 341: 6/12/17 Discharge: 8/14/17

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        • #5
          For us it was between six and twelve months. Our creditors were American General Finance (Now Green Leaf Financial); some parent company for which our two credit cards were children of--one was Sears; the other was some permutation of AT&T. The last was the finance company for Kia Family Car Company of St. Augustine Florida. 'Hub had foolishly co-signed for an acquaintance with bad credit. Acquaintance defaulted on loan. Lesson learned. NEVER, EVER CO-SIGN FOR ANYONE!!!!! Acquaintance never filed for BK. He is stuck with the debt.

          Good wishes to you!~~~
          "To go bravely forward is to invite a miracle."

          "Worry is the darkroom where negatives are formed."

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          • #6
            I just noticed your response! Thank you so much for responding! It's been about 5 months nearly 6 now for me and I have not been sued yet. But my creditors are suppose to be aggressive. If I could go another month (or two) I would be really happy. I am waiting on a settlement to... well settle. And should be getting something back from it. My concern is how long once you do get sued, or a summons is how much time you have until a court date. I am hoping it buys me a bit more time to file when it happens. Also... I am hoping I get some kind of letter. Did you get served by the police? Coming into my work that wouldn't be a good thing.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Taipans View Post
              I just noticed your response! Thank you so much for responding! It's been about 5 months nearly 6 now for me and I have not been sued yet. But my creditors are suppose to be aggressive. If I could go another month (or two) I would be really happy. I am waiting on a settlement to... well settle. And should be getting something back from it. My concern is how long once you do get sued, or a summons is how much time you have until a court date. I am hoping it buys me a bit more time to file when it happens. Also... I am hoping I get some kind of letter. Did you get served by the police? Coming into my work that wouldn't be a good thing.
              The procedures will vary by state. AngelinaCat is in Floridsa. Your profile says you are in Missouri. I found the court rules: https://www.courts.mo.gov/page.jsp?id=871

              It looks like you will have at least 30 days from the time you receive a Summons to respond: https://www.courts.mo.gov/courts/Cle...2?OpenDocument

              Personal service can be made by a Sheriff or an adult who is not a party to the action:
              https://www.courts.mo.gov/courts/Cle...1?OpenDocument


              Service can also be by mail, assuming the defendant acknowledges receipt (if the defendant doesn't acknowledge receipt, he could be ordered to pay the expense): https://www.courts.mo.gov/courts/Cle...4?OpenDocument

              These rules are very similar to rules in California. I have worked in law firms for over 20 years and in my experience if service is not done by mail, the law firm usually hires a professional process server, not the Sheriff. But, it really does depend on the lawyer's preference.

              I am conveying only what I read at the above links. You should not rely on me to tell you about Missouri law or customs because I have no experience in Missouri. Please rely on your own research or an MO attorney.
              LadyInTheRed is in the black!
              Filed Chap 13 April 2010. Discharged May 2015.
              $143,000 in debt discharged for $36,500, including attorneys fees. Money well spent!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by LadyInTheRed View Post

                It looks like you will have at least 30 days from the time you receive a Summons to respond:
                It seems pretty cut and dry according to the link you provided. I suppose that law can vary state to state? I came across another (not .gov) site that mentioned you had only had 15 days to respond (which was call some term). That seemed really short. Obviously being served would trigger the BK filing, but knowing I will have at least 30 days is comforting. I am still waiting on the settlement agreement, although a counter was sent last Friday. My lawyer is countering that.... without even asking as I was low-balled. But at this point I don't care, I just need the money to make home repairs and pay my attorney. So frustrating.

                Thanks as usual for all of the help!

                Comment

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