I have an old debt that the bank is trying to collect, if I can’t reach a satisfactory settlement and they sue, what can I expect to happen?

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I have an old debt that the bank is trying to collect, if I can’t reach a satisfactory settlement and they sue, what can I expect to happen?

The loan was unsecured and I made payments on it up until 2008. I owe approximately $60,000 with late fees and interest. I am self-employed, married, and own a home which is in a trust.

Asked on November 9, 2010 under Bankruptcy Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Assuming the debt is valid and you do not have defenses to it, you could expect to lose if sued. If they sue and win, the bank will get a judgment against you. If you do not pay the judgment voluntarily at that point, the bank could attempt to garnish your wages (income from your self employment) or bank account(s); they could potentially put a lien on your home (you say you own it but it's in a trust--it will depend on the exact ownership arrangements); they could possible put  a lien on business assets, if the business is not an LLC or a corporation (e.g. accounts receivable; office equipment); they could execute on property you own (e.g. force a sale of some of your assets--in short, there are a number of mechanisms for collecting from you. You may wish to consider bankruptcy as an option.


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