The summons document mentions that this was for a bank of america credit card that I paid last in 2008. I discontinued payments later on due to my financial conditions. Can you please let me know what to do now? can I file a response to the summons myself? Please help.
thanks a lot!
You will need to respond to the Complaint by filing an Answer, Demurrer, or another type of Motion (such as a Motion to Quash Service). The Answer is what is typically filed after a Summons and Complaint are served unless you believe the claims are without merit or service was improper. Unless the Complaint is verified, you can file a general denial which denies all allegations of the Complaint. You will also want to allege any affirmative defenses you may have. If the Court is unable to provide you with a form, you may want to consult the CA Judicial Council forms found here: http://www.courts.ca.gov/formname.htm.
At this point, it may be worthwhile to negotiate a resolution to the lawsuit filed against you. Most credit card agreements allow the other party to collect attorney's fees if a lawsuit is initiated. A resolution now would save you additional attorneys fees, filing fees and possibly allow you to negotiate a discount on the amount owed. You should consult an attorney.
The above is general legal analysis. It is not "legal advice" but analysis, and different lawyers may analyze this matter differently, especially if there are additional facts not reflected in the question. The above response does not create an attorney/client relationship. I am not your attorney until retained by a written retainer agreement signed by both of us. See also avvo.com terms and conditions item 9, incorporated as if it was reprinted here
You should seek help to prepare your answer and review your case. You indicate it may be close to 5 years since paying your credit card last. I do not practice in CA, but my understanding is that the Statute of Limitation on credit card debt is 4 years in your state. An attorney will be able to help you determine if your debt is indeed barred by the Statute of Limitations and how to file a responsive pleading that raises this defense and any other defense you may have.
There are consumer rights attorneys in your area that can help you.