Know more about debt collection defense
It is common these days to get collection letters or to be served in a lawsuit by a creditor you never heard of before. This happens because creditors sell or assign debts to collection agencies. But the law gives you the right to demand information about the debt; it is called debt verification.
If the collector cannot provide the documentation, you can raise that as defense in a court of law. Debt collection defense does not necessarily mean that you have already been sued.
Request documentation of the debt before you are sued
If a debt collector is contacting you, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) provides you with an important weapon – the verification letter. FDCPA gives you the right to dispute the debt or to ask for a verification of the debt within the next 30 days. The collector is obliged to send you the requested information and stop its collection activity. They cannot continue the collection activity until the debt is verified. There is no time limit for the debt collector to respond and they can’t restart calling or writing you demand letters.
Information you will need regarding the debt collection when you are sued
If you get sued by a debt collector the law asks for both creditor and debt collector to have even more information regarding that debt. It is called an “attachment rule” and it means that you have to attach to a copy of the account (or a written contract) the complaint or explain in the complaint why the account it is not attached. If the creditor or debt collector won’t do it the lawsuit can be dismissed.
You can ask the court to require the debt collector to get the information by filling a formal motion with the court. This is called “request to a definite statement”. The creditor must grant the information that contains a copy of the original written agreement preferably signed by you.