If I recieve a summons to court over a GE Money debt, do I have to attend court? Can I be punished by jail time?

Asked over 2 years ago - Pigeon Forge, TN

I am from Tennessee.
I am 23 years old.
I am a female.
I don;t really know how old the debt is.

Attorney answers (5)

  1. Jason Wade Barnette

    Contributor Level 14


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . GE Money Bank is very unlikely to be the Plaintiff in this case. It is most likely a debt purchaser such as Asset Acceptance, CACH LLC, Gault Financial, Portfolio Recovery, Midland Funding, etc., that is the assignee of GE Money Bank; i.e., the debt purchaser bought it from GE Money.

    These matters can be defended and there is the potential for counter-claims as well. However, yes, you must appear or a default will be rendered against you. You will not go to jail, but wage garnishment, bank levy, and attachment to real and personal property can happen.

    You would be right minded to consult with a consumer protection attorney that is used to the General Sessions Courts of our state.

    Jason Barnette
    Barnette Law Offices
    309 Hollow Tree Court
    Nashville, Tennessee 37221

    I am not your attorney nor is any answer I may provide legal advice. You may contact me directly for legal advice... more
  2. Mitchell Paul Goldstein

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If you have any defenses and do not show up, you waive them. The statute of limitations for judgments is much longer. If the plaintiff is a debt collector, you can beat the debt by making them prove that they have a right to come after you.

    Jail time is not a punishment for civil suits.

    Mr. Goldstein is a Virginia-licensed attorney only. The information is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice.... more
  3. Alan D. Walton


    Contributor Level 19


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If you do not show up in court, you will lose the case and be responsible for the debt. You cannot be jailed for not paying a debt. The worst case scenario is that your wages or you bank account will be garnished after the court enters a judgment against you.

  4. Edwin Arnold Anderson


    Contributor Level 15

    Answered . No jail. Not for a civil debt. If the Bill Collector threatens you with jail, you probably have a good claim under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

    But you need a lawyer, or this thing will haunt you for a long time.

    If you go to court yourself I am more than 90% sure GE Money will get a judgment against you just because you aren't familiar with how to defend yourself.

    I suggest hiring Attorney Matthew Duggin in Knoxville. (865) 357-9988.

    The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an... more
  5. Marc Gregory Wagman

    Contributor Level 17


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . Agreed they cannot throw you in jail for owing money. If you don't show up they will get a default judgment against you for the amount in the lawsuit. They can go after wages or other assets once they have a judgment. If they do whats called a citation to discover assets in Illinois you should show up for that as a judge could issue a bench warrant for failure to appear. When it says you must appear you have too. If it says you may appear then it is not mandatory.

    The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The... more

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