What should I do if I am being sued by a debt collector office (machol and johannes llc) for money I owed PIMA medical ins. (Vocational school) I owe 1000.61 but they want me to pay now almost 1600 I read the contract, and it says "student promises to pay to the school the total of payments in accordance with the retail installment contract" so does this mean that I don't actually have a contract with the debt collector? I have been researching, because I have no job therefore no money to pay in full right now, and it says that it is better to respond and ask to validate the debt, but since they already sent me a copy of the contract, does this mean they validated the debt? If so, can I go to court? Do I have any chance of winning? But will I have to pay "court charges" because in the summons papers it states " if you want a jury trial, you must ask for one in the answer and pay for jury fee in addition to the filing fee? I didn't know there was a fee if you wanted to go to court? In the summons notice there is already a court date, April 10th, does this mean that I wouldn't have to pay a 'court fee'?
Woah, I deal with Jacques Machol all of the time. You would be best off getting an attorney to negotiate down the debt to a lower amount that can paid in a lump sum or installments.
The information provided in this answer does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you are interested in his legal services, feel free to call Chris at (303) 409-7635 at his law office in the Denver Tech Center. All initial consultations are free of charge.
April 10 is an appearance date. You don't have to pay to show up, but if you want to avoid a judgment entering, you will have to file an Answer and there is a fee for filing an Answer (about $90).
It is very likely that if you file an answer and take the case to trial you will lose. After all, it sounds like you do owe the debt. Additionally, if the contract allows for colleciton costs to be added to the judgment then your debt will be increased by the attorney fees spent by the collector at trial.
You have a number of choices. You can do nothing in which case judgment will enter and the collector will start trying to figure out where you have wages or a bank account to garnish. You can file an Answer and pay the court fee which will delay entry of judgment for a couple of months. You can talk to the collection attorney and arrange to make payments or offer a reduced lump sum to settle the debt. Or you can file bankruptcy and discharge the debt.
You can reach Harkess & Salter LLC at (303) 531-5380 or info@Harkess-Salter.com. Stephen Harkess is an attorney licensed in the state and federal courts of Colorado. This answer is for general information only and does not create an attorney client relationship between Stephen Harkess or Harkess & Salter LLC and any person. You should schedule a consultation with an attorney to discuss the specifics of your legal issues.