According to Debt.org, Florida has some of the highest rates for bankruptcy filings, unemployment, and credit problems when compared to the national average. These circumstances explain why most people live paycheck to paycheck. Unfortunately, sometimes you may have to choose between paying bills and putting food on the table. In most cases, this may lead to aggressive creditors or debt collectors harassing you. However, you do not have to tolerate harassment from these entities if you are having trouble paying your bills. There are stringent State and Federal laws that have been established to prohibit abusive and unjust debt collection activities.
At Shrader Law, PLLC, our experienced debt collection defense lawyers have been providing clients throughout Florida with a unique form of debt collection defense for many years. Our dedicated lawyers have the credentials, skill sets, and knowledge to assist you with debt collection issues by turning the tables on creditors and debt collectors. Over the years, we have witnessed many clients who have tried unsuccessfully to handle unjust creditors or debt collectors on their own. However, these agencies are often intimidated by lawyers, and your Shrader Law, PLLC debt collection defense lawyer will ensure your rights are protected.
If you are in debt, you may be wondering if you need a Shrader Law, PLLC debt collection lawyer. Here are some signs that you need one:
Although you are allowed to defend yourself against a debt lawsuit without an attorney, you should know that the creditor or debt collection agency will have skilled lawyers on their side to represent their interest. Most of these attorneys have years of experience and have most likely handled numerous cases similar to yours. This is why you need a Shrader Law, PLLC debt collection defense lawyer in your corner. Your attorney will:
While responding to a debt lawsuit, your lawyer will challenge the creditor’s legal right to file a lawsuit against you. If you fail to respond to the debt lawsuit, the judge will not require the creditor to show proof that they are legally required to sue you. In fact, the court will consider your silence as admission to the allegations leveled against you.
After you are served with debt papers, the burden of proof will be on the creditor or debt collection agency. They must prove that:
Challenging the alleged proof of the amount you owe is one of the defense strategies that your Shrader Law, PLLC debt collection lawyer will use against the lawsuit. For example, if the creditor or debt collection agency is suing you for $3,000 for your credit account, your attorney will ask for documentation accounting for every dollar that you owe. However, because accounts often change hands before a lawsuit, it may be impossible for them to find such information on time. This can result in the dismissal of your case or a settlement agreement at a much lower rate.
Florida’s statute of limitations dictates how long debt collectors have to file a debt lawsuit against you. For written contracts, like personal loans, creditors or debt collectors will have up to five years to sue you. The statute of limitations begins from the last day you were active. For instance, the last time you used your credit card to make a purchase or make a payment on your card’s balance.
Because making a payment can restart the clock, you may want to speak to your Shrader Law, PLLC debt collection defense lawyer and seek legal advice. Some creditors or debt collection agencies will make an effort to collect small amounts to extend the timeline and sue you later.
If a debt collector or creditor violates the law, they may be responsible for more than just your legal fees. Your attorney can help your case get dismissed and seek compensation for damages.
If you are experiencing financial distress and unable to pay your debt, bankruptcy may be the best option. Your attorney will help you file for bankruptcy, and this will automatically stop all debt collection activities. Although filing for bankruptcy can harm your credit and financial status, it will help you start with a clean slate and rebuild your credit. Your attorney will also help you determine whether to file Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Bills, calls, and lawsuits from creditors and debt collectors are the last things you want to deal with. According to a survey by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), approximately 70 million Americans have had to deal with creditors and collectors, and more than 25% of them felt threatened.
Most creditors and debt collectors use language that can spark fear. Therefore, when you are served with a lawsuit, you may feel the urge to ignore the issue and hope that everything will go away soon. However, ignoring the issue will only make things worse. Call 813-360-1529 or contact one of Shrader Law, PLLC’s debt collection defense lawyers to help protect your rights and determine the most suitable defense strategy with the best outcome.