If I just got served papers for a small claims case and information on the paperwork is incorrect, do I have a case to fight it even if I do owe them a debt?

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If I just got served papers for a small claims case and information on the paperwork is incorrect, do I have a case to fight it even if I do owe them a debt?

Paperwork claims that on or about 10-01 of last year that I owed them $530.79. I have a letter from them dated 11-29 saying I owe $713.43 and have made payment to it up until 2 months ago when I had no money to send them. I had every intention of sending a payment on my next pay day but was served papers instead. The paperwork also says they made a bona fide effort to collect the claim. All they did was call my at work, at which time I asked them to please not call me at work and I could be contacted on my cell after 5 pm. I never heard from them again until i got served. Do I have a case to fight it?

Asked on August 28, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Oregon

Answers:

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

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Okay let's start from the beginning.  You need to respond to the summons regardless of what it says in it at this point in time.  Now, once you answer with a "general denial" you are going to then raise "affirmative defenses" like failure to proerly serve you, accord and satisfaction.  The clerk at the small claims window will help you.  Bring all your payment reciepts and try and put them down on paper in chronological order.  Good luck.


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