What are a debtor’s rights to notice before their bank account is frozen by a creditor?

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What are a debtor’s rights to notice before their bank account is frozen by a creditor?

My bank account has a citation put on it from a debt collector. This just happened. I was given the name of the company that put the citation on it and learned the following after calling them: 1) they obtained a judgement against me (I was never served notice of filing or of the judgement); 2) the debt is to a credit card company and is $8,000 + (this is legit and is money that I owe); 3) they claim to have sent copies of the citation on my account but I have not received them. Is this legal? Shouldn’t I receive notice of a judgement suit? Should I be receiving notice of the bank account freeze? What are my rights and how do I proceed? I don’t even know where they filed suit.

Asked on April 20, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Illinois

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you are correct.  You should have been served with the summons and complaint in the action to collect the debt and the action would have been file din the county in which you resided at the time the action was begun.  So I would go down and run your name through your local Court system or call your bank and ask to see a copy of the judgement (it should have the venue and index number on the judgement).  Then bring an Order to Show Cause to vacate the judgement and to stay the execution of the judgement.  Raise the issue of lack of personal jurisdiction as an "affirmative defense" and make sure that the court is aware that you claim that you were not served (this is what that means).   Maybe the judgement creditor will settle with you if they do not want the hassle of defending the motion.  Good luck. 


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