If a university has sent me to collections for $6000 for classes I didn’t take, what can I do?

I went to a university and they are charging me for 3 classes I didn’t take. I’ve been trying to resolve this for 2 years and I always get the runaround and then they stopped calling me back or answering emails. I have started with about 5 different people and even tried to get it sent up to the managers many times but I’ve never actually spoken to one. What kind of lawyer can help me with this?

Asked on December 14, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Alaska


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Any lawyer with a general practice or  who handles consummer debt cases can help you.

To get the money, if you don't pay it voluntarily, the university or its collections agency will have to sue you. If they do, to win, they will have to present evidence showing you took the classes. You, in turn, can present evidence showing that you did not--e.g. transcripts that don't list it; class schedules that show you were in a different class at the time; testimony or yourself or other witnesses. They will have to prove their case by the standard of "preponderance of the evidence"--i.e. that it is more likely than not that you took the classes. You may be able to counterclaim for some costs or compensation, if this is a baseless action; you should discuss that with your attorney.

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