What canI do to collect on a debt if I live in one state and the person who owes me lives in another?

Get Legal Help Today

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What canI do to collect on a debt if I live in one state and the person who owes me lives in another?

I loaned $35,000 to my niece. While there is no agreement setting forth the terms there are numerous e-mails acknowledging the debt. I established at the beginning a minimum payment of $50/month which was expected to increase. I have repeatedly asked them but so far nothing. Any action I could take besides writing a letter. Filing liens, legal action etc. I am in CA they are in NH.

Asked on August 13, 2010 under Bankruptcy Law, California

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The key here is that where ever you start a lawsuit - and I think that you are going to have to start a lawsuit - the court needs to be able to make a decision regarding the loan that would impact on your niece.  In legal terms we call that "personal jurisdiction."  That is why courts are so picky about how a party is served with the summons and complaint (called "pleadings") and that the service was done to comply with the statutes setting for the rules.  There are methods of service that are laid out in statutes regarding the service of a person who lives out of state by means other than personal service - actually handing them the pleadings - which is the preferred method of service.  You need to speak with an attorney about this matter.  He or she can let you know the specifics  - which you need to ask - along with the fee for collection.  It is generally a percentage.  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 AttorneyPages.com 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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

 Secured with SHA-256 Encryption