What to do if I received papers to appear in court for a credit card I was unable to pay back?

I had a semi truck that had a lot of mechanical problems that cost me a lot of money and I had to use several credit cards to pay for repairs. The payments got so high every month I couldn’t keep up with the payments. This is the first one to take me to court.

Asked on September 5, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Tennessee

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You need to file an Answer within the time indicated on the summons or you will lose by default (like forfeiting a ball game). Of course, if you truly owe the money (did not pay what you owed), you will ultimately lose anyway...therefore, you may wish to file an Answer, to buy time, then see if you can't negotiate a payment plan you could live with. Another alternative, if you owe far more money in total (not just this credit card issuer, but for all your debts) than you can pay, would be to file bankruptcy; if you want to explore that option, you should meet with an attorney specializing in bankruptcy, to see if it's the right option for you.


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