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Is a disputed charge a defense to a lawsuit?

York, PA |
Filed under: Bankruptcy Credit

PA-A thief stole my credit card number and charged $500 to my credit card. I monitor my accounts, caught it, and disputed it within a day. Because I couldn't prove I didn't charge it (how do you even prove that?), the CC Co refused to take the charge off. I refused to pay it. After months of calls from CC Co then collection agency, my Cease and Desist letter, it is now with CC attorneys. They are threatening to sue to collect. Would they do that over $500? Can I continue to dispute the charge as a defense to a suit? I don't know what else to do.

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Attorney answers 3


I would be very surprised if an attorney filed suit over $500. If suit is filed, I would raise the defenses mentioned. You could always offer to settle the amount for less - say $100 or $200 or so - but make sure you protect yourself with regards to your credit report - meaning if you settle make sure you obtain documentation verifying such.

Good luck

Daniel Anthony DeLiberty

Daniel Anthony DeLiberty


I have seen plenty of lawsuits filed in magisterial district court and Philadelphia Municipal Court for less than $1000. As the poster indicated, not many at the $500 level, but from my experience have seen quite a few in the $700-1000 range. You may want to file an ID theft affidavit.


If you did not make the charge, then it would be a defense to any lawsuit that is brought.


The credit card comes with a contract that governs how to deal with disputed charges. Some cards have a mediation process, some have protection plans, etc. Look closely at the agreement. That will govern whether you have to pay. In addition, if it doesn't look favorable for you under the contract, you can always offer something less that full payment to settle.

This communication is intended as general information and not specific legal advice, and this communication does not create an attorney-client relationship. To get legal advice, consult an attorney in your local area or the area where the issue is located. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response is based on the limited facts provided, and without any independent investigation of the author. Given additional or different facts, the response would likely change. The attorney providing this response is only licensed in Pennsylvania, and you should contact an attorney in your jurisdiction if it is outside Pennsylvania.

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