We received a letter from a financial services company that stated a lawsuit was filed against us. I checked on the LASuperiorcourt.org website, paid $4.75 to see if one existed. One was filed just 5 days ago. The lawsuit is called Collections Case (limited justisdiction). With a future hearing on 10/17/2012(collections-proof of service). We have not received a summons.
How do I proceed? And should I contact that financial services. They say they are not a collections agency, they service the public/not the creditors, and they specialize in out of court arrangements.
Nelson & Kennard files a lot of creditor lawsuits all over California. They are good at what they do. Eventually a process server will get around to serving the lawsuit on you. The hearing set for 10/17/2012 is set automatically by the court staff for the single purpose of proof of service, if the lawsuit is not served by the hearing date, the court will probably give them a short period of additional time to serve you or dismiss the case. When you are served a thirty day clock starts to run. If you don’t answer the lawsuit the Plaintiff is entitled to ask for a default judgment. If they get a default judgment they can use that to attempt collection, garnish wages and file liens. DO NOT LET THEM GET A DEFAULT. You have about four choices 1) answer the lawsuit, but you probably don’t have any defense, 2) pay what you owe, 3) settle; call Nelson and Kennard and speak with the attorney who has your case, they will do a reasonable (their point of view) settlement; or 4) file for bankruptcy. You should consult with an attorney about bankruptcy.
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I think what you received was a solicitation letter from a law firm who desires to defend you in the collections lawsuit which was recently filed against you.
If I were you, I would not contact that company. You are better off either defending (or settling) the lawsuit with an attorney of your choice, or even on your own.
Frank W. Chen is licensed to practice law in the State of California. The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice. This posting does not create any attorney-client relationship with the author. For specific advice about your particular situation, consult your own attorney.
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