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Can a company that bought a debt take me to court?

Denver, NC |

I received a letter from PushPin Holdings advising I owed $2,188.59 for equipment rental held by Lease Finance Group. They advised they will be initiating a civil action against me & have reported this to by CB. I had a credit card machine at my company 10 yrs. ago. The co. started dipping into my ckg. acct and no one could explain the charges. I closed the acct. and told them to pick the machine up. When I closed the business in 2004 the machine was still there. I called again and was told to use it as a door stop, the modem was out of date. I called Pushpin & she was rude stating I was going to court in their state, somewhere up north because she was filing on this that day. I have read that I need to send a BOP. What is that? Do they have any claim here? I am in NC

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Attorney answers 3


Literally - anyone can take anybody to court. Whether or not they can win is the question. It is possible for a company that bought the rights to your debt to sue your company. Where they could sue you depends upon what the contract says. Whether or not they could sue you individually as well as your company depends upon what the contract says. If the account is really 10 years past due it is unlikely they will actually sue you, but they might. It is a common threat tactic for a debt collector to claim they are suing you that very day or hour, when they have no intention of doing so. They still have to serve you with the legal papers when they sue and give you a chance to defend yourself. Whether they are allowed to threaten you like this and how long they have to sue you depends upon what the contract says. The Fair Debt Collection Practice Act does not apply to business debt, unfortunately. The contract may have said the law of the up north state determines how long they have to sue you. If you Google Pushpin Holdings you will find complaints about their aggressive tactics. If they do sue you, be sure and consider hiring an attorney to present your defenses to the contract. I recommend you find your records of this contract now and keep them handy in case you are sued - including your copy of the contract and the bank statements showing the suspicious charges.

This message is intended for informational purposes only. It is impossible to consider all relevant facts from a message board question. No attorney-client relationship has been created. Readers should seek a personal legal consultation with an attorney of their choice for the most accurate advice.


Sounds like the debt would be barred from suit under the applicable statute of limitations. If they sue you post a question here again to get advice on filing an Answer.

Disclaimer: This answer does not constitute legal advice. I am admitted in the States of New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts only and make no attempt to opine on matters of law that are not relevant to those three States. This advice is based on general principles of law that may or may not relate to your specific situation. Facts and laws change and these possible changes will affect the advice provided here. Consult an attorney in your locale before you act on any of this advice. You should not rely on this advice alone and nothing in these communications creates an attorney client relationship.


Before a company that bought a debt (a "debt buyer") can collect on the debt in North Carolina, it must obtain a collection agency license from the Department of Insurance. If it does not do so, then its collection calls and letters to persons or companies are illegal, and could entitle you to money damages. In other words, the victim of illegal collection attempts could file a lawsuit against the debt buyer, and potentially win money.

Additionally, North Carolina law prohibits debt buyers from making false threats of legal action. If a lawsuit is filed, and the creditor knows where the debtor is, then the creditor must properly deliver to the debtor the lawsuit paperwork, even if the suit is filed out of state.

No one should EVER pay any money to a debt buyer without receiving proof that it is now the rightful owner of the debt. The debtor should also ask for a copy of the original contract and the account history to determine why they claim you still owe money, and what the contract says about what law applies and where suit can be filed. If the debt buyer refuses to provide that information, then it is unlikely that it has the evidence it would need to prove a case in court, and the debtor should pay it exactly zero dollars.

(The attorney responding is licensed only in the state of North Carolina. This response does NOT constitute legal advice and does NOT create an attorney/ client relationship! Rather, the response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter in question. Although a response is provided to the specific question, there may be other facts and law relevant to the issue that the questioner has left out and which would make the reply unsuitable. Therefore, the questioner should not base any decision on the answer, but should confer with an attorney in person about the specifics of his or her case.)

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