Served with a debt collection lawsuit for a debt you think is not yours? DONT IGNORE IT!
Let’s say for example, your name is John Smith. Surely, there are an infinite number of people with that name here in the United States and furthermore I bet many of them have a Chase Bank Card. So, you are served with a Summons for a lawsuit and you take a look at the papers and it says, for example, an account number you don’t even recognize as yours or you have never been late on any payments whatsoever to Chase Bank, or hell, maybe you’ve never had a credit card in your life, let alone a Chase Bank Card. Do yourself a favor! Speak up about that!
If you don’t bother to answer the lawsuit because you assume its not your debt or they can’t get a judgment and try to collect against you, you are absolutely wrong!
There is a reason you are given a chance to file your Answer in court – to respond to the claims against you and present any defenses you may have. If you fail to respond at all, you are waiving your right to dispute the claim. Let’s say John Smith totally forgot about this old Chase Bank card but only after he was sued, a default judgment was entered against him and his wages garnished. Getting a judge to vacate the judgment or stop the garnishment is going to be an uphill battle for you, and frankly, you should have spoken up when you had the chance.
A big issue today is debt buyers who are purchasing old credit cards debts from Chase Bank or CitiBank and they sue in their name, so many people will immediately think, “I’ve never had an account with them, they can’t get a judgment against me.” WRONG! If you don’t respond to the lawsuit in Georgia within thirty days of being served with the lawsuit, you are then in default and in danger of the Plaintiff receiving a default judgment against you. Simply put, you didn’t put up any defenses and the Plaintiff easily wins with little or no documentation for their claim. The time to contest the merits of the case is during the period prescribed for you to Answer. So, Answer it or waive the right to assert those defenses!
Perhaps the debt was in fact yours, but you just didn’t recognize it based on the paperwork provided with the summons. Well, it is likely that you will be shit out of luck by the time the judgment is entered and your bank account is frozen or your wages are garnished. It will be immensely harder to fix that disastrous problem than it would be to simply file an answer to the lawsuit and say “Not Mine”. How hard it that?