Is there any way I can fight to have my brother pay off a debts for an account tha tI allowed him to put in my name?

UPDATED: Sep 14, 2011

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Is there any way I can fight to have my brother pay off a debts for an account tha tI allowed him to put in my name?

Earlier this year I let my brother buy himself a phone plan. The account was put under my name because his credit was too bad to open a new account. We had a verbal agreement that he would pay off all the phone bills on time so it wouldn’t screw with my credit. However I have come to learn that he was not making payments and the phone company had to shut off his phone. The fee to shut off the phone combined with his missed payments turned out to be a debt of almost $700 which will be charged to my name. Is there anyway that I can take him to court for not paying and hurting my credit?

Asked on September 14, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Pennsylvania


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If you had an agreement (oral or implied) with your brother where you allowed him to put the telephone account under his name because his credit was poor and as a result he has incurred a debt close to seven hundred dollars ($700.00) in your name, he is obligated to pay off this debt one way or another. Meaning, if you want to protect your credit, you should do the following:

1. pay off the telephone account in full and close it out so that no more charges can be incurred upon it since it is in your name;

2. work out a monthly payment plan with your brother to pay you back where he also pays you interest on the amount you paid down. Make sure you have a written agreement signed by him and dated concerning this obligation;

3. if he is unwilling to do so, small claims court is your option.

Good luck.

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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