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John N Skiba
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John Skiba’s Answers

91 total


  • I just received a default judgement n the mail does that mean they r going 2 garnish my check

    I have not been officialy served any papers just received some in the mail

    John’s Answer

    Now that they have a judgment they are going to be looking to collect on it. Wage garnishment is usually the debt collectors first choice. If you received the default judgment in the mail you may have some basis for having the judgment set aside. They are required to server you with the lawsuit personally and clearly they know where you live. Even if they received permission from the court to serve you through the mail many times the debt collector doesn't do all the necessary steps and leaves you an opportunity to have the judgment set aside. I have a couple videos in my Avvo profile that deal with this that may be helpful as well.

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  • Does "... based upon a review of the business records of original creditor" mean personal knowledge in Affidavit of Debt of JDB?

    JDB's Affidavit of Debt (affiant is their employee) states the above statement, which can imply "personal knowledge", and not hearsay? Does this comply with Rule 803(6)(b) and thus is admissible in court as evidence?

    John’s Answer

    In Arizona case law requires that if a person refers to documents in an affidavit that they attach them. I have handled hundreds of junk debt buyer cases and have yet to see a witness of the JDB who actually has any real knowledge of the documents. One of my standard questions when I cross-exam the JDB witness at trial is when they reviewed the documents they are testifying about for the first time. Usually it was the morning of trial. Their knowledge base is not enough to be considered a "qualified witness" under Rule 803(6).

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  • Can my wages be garnished for an unpaid medical bill?

    I have an emergency room bill from 2011 in the amount of 6,556. I had no insurance at the time. I want to see what options I have.

    John’s Answer

    Only if they sue you and get a judgment first.

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  • I have a garnishment in the state of AZ for 25% of my pay I want to go to the court to get it reduced to 15% what forms doi use.

    I know I have to pay a file fee to see a judge what should I take to court to prove a hardship to get it reduced to 15% so that I can make my bills without losing my home or vehicle

    John’s Answer

    Along with the notice of the garnishment there should have been a form you can use to request a hearing. Fill that out and file it with the court. Once a hearing is set you need to be prepared to demonstrate to the judge that the current garnishment at 25% is a true hardship. The judge cannot go any lower than 15%.

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  • I'm sued for debt for non-payment due to financial hardship. How can I hire a lawyer to defend me If I can't afford it now?

    I have 4 lawsuits, all Pro Se and I would love to have a lawyer help me get through all these. Are there low-cost payment plans for someone like me? And if I started all the lawsuits Pro Se, can a lawyer still represent me to complete the process?

    John’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    While I agree that bankruptcy will deal with the problem I can give you another point of view. You could fight the collection lawsuits in court. Most debt collection lawsuits in Arizona are brought by debt buyers. These companies buy large portfolios of debt for pennies on the dollar and get very little documentation in return, thus making their case difficult to prove at trial. I have tried nearly one hundred of these type of cases and found them very winnable. You could contest the cases in court and hopefully win them all there. Even if you only win a couple of them you could then focus on settling the other two out. Just another option besides bankruptcy.

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  • What is the best way to explain to a creditor that I will NOT pay them even if they sue me. I believe I am judgement proof.

    Original creditor Sears/Citi Bank would not work out a payment plan with me when my income unexpectedly stopped. 3 years later I have received a summons for a collection agency who is suing me for $7800. My credit limit was $6000. The rest is in...

    John’s Answer

    My guess is that you are being sued by a company that bought the debt. I have handled a lot of debt buyer cases in Arizona and in my experience even if you are judgment proof they will still move forward with the lawsuit and try and get a default judgment. Just because you are judgment proof doesn't mean that the debt collector can't try and collect. My recommendation is to fight them head on. You can win these types of cases if you contest them.

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  • I received a summons for a civil - complaint case from a collection agency that was sold a 2005 debt to them. How do I answer?

    This is an old debt that was resolved but I never received any kind of letter from the debtor. I have never heard from them in 9 years, and now all of a sudden I get a summons? It is stating that a contract was agreed upon and then bought/transfer...

    John’s Answer

    I agree that whatever you do make sure you file an Answer to the lawsuit. The debt collectors count on people ignoring the lawsuit and they end up with a default judgment. I have a video on my Avvo profile that discusses how you can draft an Answer. You have defenses and these cases can be won but you may want to seek out an attorney.

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  • Can I file a Motion to Strike plaintiff's (Portfolio Recovery, JDB) granted Motion for Telephonic Witness during trial?

    Plaintiff's granted Motion for Telephonic Witness reads: "...Court Appearance scheduled for (trial date). Appearing as a witness in person will be an economic hardship for Plaintiff's client, as Plaintiff's witness resides outside of the State of ...

    John’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    I handle cases in Arizona against Portfolio Recovery all the time. This is their standard motion to allow their witness to appear telephonically. I can tell you that I object ever single time they file this motion and if your case is in the Arizona justice court system that the courts allow them to appear telephonically every single time. My recommendation is to go to the trial and be prepared to object to the admission of evidence that wasn't created by Portfolio Recovery (i.e. billing statements, bill of sale, affidavits, etc.). It is helpful to have an attorney at these types of trials because the objections you have are based upon the Rules of Evidence.

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  • Can a debt collector sue me for an unpaid pay day loan that's 10 years old?

    I received a phone call today about legal action against me for an unpaid pay day loan that's 10 years old, from a bank I no longer have, I honestly don't remember getting the loan , I asked for documentation e.i the check the contact. .... The ...

    John’s Answer

    I practice law in Arizona and run into cases like yours quite a bit by junk debt buyers. It sounds like you have a valid defense (statute of limitations) if they have actually filed a lawsuit and if they haven't you may have a claim under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Sometimes it is hard to find the people responsible to sue with these old pay day loans, but not impossible.

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  • Is there a AZ civil procedure rule that references "Account Stated"? Thank you in advance

    "Account Stated and Breach of Contract" cases

    John’s Answer

    I practice law in Arizona and handle these types of debt collection cases. There is no rule of civil procedure that discusses "Account Stated". This is usually the legal theory many of the junk debt buyers proceed on because they can't prove the elements for a breach of contract.

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