What to do if I’m being sued but never received any documents?

I was served by an attorney representing a credit card company and I have a pre-trial hearing date set for next month. I just received a letter from said attorney stating that her firm served me with Plaintiff’s Request for Production of Documents and Interrogatories and that she would be asking the court to intervene and issue an order compelling response. I never was served nor received any documentation by mail. I mailed a certified letter to the firm advising them of such and filed the original with the court. I need to know what recourse do I have if any or any motions I should file since I was never served with those documents.

Asked on September 21, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Maine

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Try to call the law firm and tell them you never received the interrogatories or request for production and ask them to send you copies of those documents with an extension of time to respond.  That may resolve the matter.

If it doesn't resolve the matter and the law firm proceeds with its motion to compel further responses, you will need to file opposition to  the motion to compel and a supporting declaration with the court and serve a copy by mail on the opposing attorney.

It would be advisable to have an attorney do this for you.  If you don't have an attorney, your declaration under penalty of perjury states that you never received the interrogatories and request for production of documents and that is why you haven't been able to respond.

You will need to file opposition to the motion to compel further responses with your supporting declaration.  At the law library, look in Pleading and Practice under motion to compel further responses and opposition to motion to compel further responses.  This will give you the general format for the opposition to the motion to compel.  You will also need to file a memorandum of points and authorities supporting your motion.  The memorandum of points and authorities consists of supporting cases and supporting statutes.  Look for a separate book at the law library called Points and Authorities.  In the table of contents  you will find points and authorities in opposition to motion to compel further responses.  You use that as your memorandum of points and authorities supporting your motion.

File your opposition to the motion to compel further responses, your declaration, and your memorandum of points and authorities and a proof of service with the court.  Serve a copy by mail on the opposing attorney.  You can use a court form proof of service or you can write your own.  If you write your own proof of service, it just says that you are at least eighteen years of age and the attached documents were sent via first class mail unless stated otherwise to ___________ (name and address of opposing attorney) on _________ (date).  You sign and date the proof of service at the bottom.  The date you sign should be the same as the date of mailing and the same date you file your documents with the court.

If you don't have an attorney, the law librarian may be able to help you find the information in Pleading and Practice and in Points and Authorities.

MD, Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You need to make sure you come prepared to court and require the firm to prove service of the request for production and interrogs.  You need to make sure you stand your ground and if you are challenging the debt itself, make sure you also challenge that as well.


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