What to do if I’m being sued for a credit card debt after the statute of limitations has run?

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What to do if I’m being sued for a credit card debt after the statute of limitations has run?

I did have a significant credit card debt in the past of about 9k that was unpaid. However, the last time I paid anything on it to a collection agency was 6 years ago. I read on-line that my state only gives 4 years for people to be sued by debt collectors.

Asked on January 20, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Texas

Answers:

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

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

You will need to file an answer to the complaint (the complaint is the lawsuit attached to the summons with which you were served).  At the law library, look for answer to complaint in the index of Pleading and Practice.  This will give you the general format for an answer to a complaint.  The answer denies the allegations in the complaint.  You should include in your answer to the complaint, the affirmative defense of the statute of limitations.  If the plaintiff has missed the statute of limitations, the plaintiff's claim is barred.  At the end of the answer to the complaint is the verification which you sign and date under penalty of perjury.  The verification attests to the veracity of your statements in the answer.  File the answer with verification and an attached proof of service with the court and mail a copy to the opposing party or the attorney for the opposing party prior to the expiration of the deadline set forth in the summons.  The proof of service verifies the date of mailing to the opposing party.  You can either 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 over 18 and the attached documents were sent via first class mail unless stated otherwise to ____________ (name and address of opposing attorney or party without an attorney) on ________ (date).  You sign and date 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 timely file your answer to the complaint with the court and serve it by mail on the opposing party, the opposing party can have a default judgment entered against you.  This means you have lost.  If that happens, you will need to file a motion to set aside the default with the court.  If the court grants your motion, the case is then back on track and litigation will continue.  Your argument is that the plaintiff missed the statute of limitations and therefore plaintiff's claim is barred.


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