What amI able to do to get a debt out of my name so it does not effect my credit?

A verbal agreement was made for a party who was living with us to pay the electric bill, which would be her only responsibility. The bill was ran up to over $700 and when we talked to the other party she said she would take care of it. I recently received a statement in the mail saying the amount of the bill will soon be sent to a collection agency. We absolutely do not have the finances to pay this bill and can no longer get in touch with the other party.

Asked on October 13, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Tennessee


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you are under an obligation to pay a debt for some third person that is not in writing with this person did you sign any documentation stating with the electrical company stating that you would be responsible for this person's debt? If not, how is it you are being billed for electricity for a unit you were not living in?

If you want to try and resolve this dispute you need need to track down the third person who ultimately owes you the money for the electrical bill that appears to be in your name. There are some online companies that you can pay a set amount for 24 hour access to do a locate or get location information for $30.00 or so. Once you get a location for this person you need to send a demand letter for the money for the bill and if the response is inadequate, small claims court is your option.

As to the bill for $700.00 that you are supposedly responsible for, you need to confirm whether or not you actually are. If you are, I suggest entering into a monthly installment to pay it off.

Good luck.

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