Is there a time limit on collecting a credit card card debt?

UPDATED: Oct 14, 2011

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Is there a time limit on collecting a credit card card debt?

I received a collection notice for a credit card I do not recall. I was told I had the card 10 years ago. It wasn’t on my credit report when I bought my house. It is for less than $500.

Asked on October 14, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, California


Carl Starrett / Law Offices Of Carl H. Starrett II

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

In California, the statute of limitations for breach of a written contract is 4 years from the date of the breach.  In the case of a credit card, the breach is failing to make the contractual payment.  Also, negative information must drop off you credit report if it is more than 7 years old.

I suggest sending a certified letter telling them that you dispute the debt and instructing them not to contact you again.  If they continue to contact you or report this debt on your credit report, I would contact a local attorney about filing claims under federal and state fair debt collection laws.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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