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How do i fight a civil law case with the statute of limitations on my side

Chino Hills, CA |

im being sued for a debt that is over four years old what optoins do i have can i fight the california statute of limitations law if so how.

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Attorney answers 6


See a debt collection defense atty. You need to file the proper response to the lawsuit on a timely basis if you have been sued. If you have a valid defense, but it isnt properly asserted, you could lose.


You should consult with a debt collection attorney ASAP, if you have a SOL defense, they will file the proper legal papers on your behalf and properly assert your defenses.

Legal disclaimer:This message does not constitute legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Any statements are made for general informational purposes and do not constitute legal advice. No attorney-client privilege is created by this communication. Attorney is licensed in California only.


I agree with my colleagues. You need to contact an attorney immediately and respond to the lawsuit in a proper and timely manner in order to avoid a default.


If you have a solid defense, and you are sure that it is an old debt, you may want to consider filing a demurrer. Or, answer the complaint, and set the case up for a motion for summary judgment with the proper discovery propounded to the other side asking for when the debt was incurred and for them to produce a copy of any papers evidencing the debt.


I agree that a demurrer is the proper response to the complaint. However, as an attorney, if there is time to contact opposing counsel before the response is due and discuss dismissing the case I would start with that approach.

Robert M. Berger is an attorney practicing in Los Angeles, CA focusing on the areas of business, creditor's rights, real estate, construction law and litigation, and, estate planning. You may contact him at (818) 606-1491 or email him at either or The above response does not constitute legal advise.

Robert Bruce Kopelson

Robert Bruce Kopelson


Demurrer only if the statute of limitations problem appears on the face of the complaint. Depending upon how complaint pleads the debt, it might not be obvious.


Seek to knock-out the Complaint by running a Demurrer (that the SOL has run, etc.), a Judgment on the Pleadings (JOP), and or a Summary Judgment if needed. If in federal court, run a Motion to Dismiss. Seek discovery (Request for Admissions) to obtain evidence (facts) admitting the dates to prove the SOL.

There are many ways to obtain a favorable ruling on an SOL issue based upon many and other facts unknown to us by the question.

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