I'm being sued for credit card debt, and I have to file an Answer very soon. In all the information I've read, it says to list all your defenses in the Answer form, but what if I don't want to contest the complaint, I just want to go into mediation or a settlement? Do I still have to file an Answer form, and if so, what do I put on it?
If that's the case, then file a General Denial without affirmative defenses. The plaintiff will still bear the burden of proof that you owe the amount of the debt.
After you file the General Denial, you can negotiate a settlement with the plaintiff. You will be in a better negotiation position if you first file the General Denial before discussing settlement.
Frank W. Chen has been licensed to practice law in California since 1988. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice for a particular case. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, please consult with your own attorney.
Debt Collection Attorney
you need to file a general denial, with standard affirmative defenses which will depend on the nature of the case (original v. assigned debt creditor, etc.).
I handle these cases on a regular basis. When were you served? Who is suing you? How much are you being sued for?
Intellectual Property Law Attorney
While I cannot give you legal advice in this forum, as a general matter you would file a general denial answer. Also, if the debt is old, you should also list a statute of limitations affirmative defense. It might apply.
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Divorce / Separation Lawyer
If you received an unverified Complaint you can file a general denial but with a verified complaint you will have to respond to each paragraph individually . In regard to defenses at issue you should consider i.e. has the statute of limitation ran? Latches, have they waited unusually long period to file the complaint? Unclean hands, Have they not provided you with the merchandise or product they promised in exchange for the money you paid the vompamy?
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