How to respond to a summons from a debt collector?

I received a summons from a law office. It’s for $5987. I am on Social Security and have assets totally about $9000. I believe I am judgement proof but I still don’t know what to do next I cannot afford an attorney. I am confused and scared. I called them and they said their client may still proceed with this. The letter was dated on the 16th of last month and I was served with it on the 5th of this month. It says I have 30 days to respond, from what date is this?

Asked on June 6, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Oregon


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Under the laws of all states in this country, if you were personally served with the summons and complaint in this matter, you have 30 days to file an answer to it filed with the court clerk and served upon the plaintiff and/or its/his/her attorney from June 5, 2012.

Failure to do so may result in a default judgment against you. Meaning, you could end up losing by default. If there is a legal aid program in your community, I suggest that you see it for assistance in drafting an answer to the complaint. If not, you should go to your local law library and have the law librarian assist you in preparing an answer to the complaint on a proper form.

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