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I am being sued by a credit card company, can I discharge this debt through bankruptcy even if a lawsuit has been filed

Indianapolis, IN |

I have one credit card that I maxed out about 6 years ago-it ws about 9K. Now a law firm has served me for a law suit and the claim is now 18k.

Can I file ch 7 or 13 on this now even though I've beens served? What are my options?

I am being sued in the state of texas for 1500.00 credit card debt what is the best avenue

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Attorney answers 5


Doesn't make a difference if a lawsuit has been filed or not as far as filing a bankruptcy proceeding is concerned. Contact a bankruptcy atty in your area without delay to review your situation to see if a bankruptcy is the way to go. Many offer a free initial consultation. Don't wait too long to contact the attorney as it is best for you if the judgment is not reduced to a judgment which is what will happen it you do not file a bankruptcy case now or respond to the lawsuit. Be sure to take with you a copy of the lawsuit when you visit with the attorney.


Yes, you can. This type of debt is dischargeable even if a lawsuit has been filed. Even if a judgment has been entered, you can discharge the underlying debt (but not any lien resulting from the judgment, unless you can file a separate proceeding to avoid the lien in the bankruptcy).

Brett Weiss

The Small Print: This response is for discussion purposes only. It isn't meant to be legal advice and you shouldn't treat it as such. If you want legal advice, speak with a local lawyer familiar with your state's laws who can review *all* of the facts and the law applicable to your situation.


Yes, if you qualify, you can file either a Ch. 7 or a Ch. 13. However, you may have other options as well. There are companies called "debt buyers" who buy up old debts from various companies, and then aggressively go after the debtors, including lawsuits. They even do this with time-barred debts. Even if the statute of limitations has expired, it is possible to revive an old debt in a number of ways, sometimes inadvertently. The debt buyers take advantage of this, and sue people counting on the fact that most of them will not know how to properly raise defenses, and then they will get judgment. Likewise, trying to negotiate with them or appearing at a court-ordered mediation can result in your being pressured into agreeing to something that will ultimately get them judgment, and will revive the debt, even if it is time-barred

From the sound of what you are describing, your account may have been sold to a debt buyer. This is their specialty, and they don't take no for an answer. Even if the suit is improper or their numbers are incorrect, it will not go away unless handled properly.

The good news is that there are attorneys who specialize in debt buyer defense. These cases are often VERY defensible by attorneys who understand how. You need a consumer law attorney who is knowledgable in consumer debt collection law to obtain the best result. The National Association of Consumer Advocates (NACA) is a non-profit consumer advocacy organization. NACA maintains a web site at where it lists geographically consumer law attorneys all over the US. If you don't already have an attorney, please look there for someone in your area who can help you.


Bankrutpcy will stop the lawsuit dead in its tracks. Even if the creditor gets a judgment and then you file for bankruptcy that would stop the creditor from being able to collect on its judgment. If you are going to file you should do it before the judgment is entered to keep it from being reported as such on your credit report and further damaging your credit beyond the bankruptcy impact. Whether or not bankruptcy is your best options depends on several factors. If you qualify for a chapter 7 then you would be able to walk away from any obligation on the debt and any other debt you may have and the bankruptcy would remain on your credit report for 10 years. If you do not qualify for a chapter 7 and you have to file a chapter 13 you will be on a repayment plan with a bankruptcy trustee for 60 months. During that time you would repay as much as your budget indicates you can afford to repay your creditor(s). Alternatively, if you have some funds available you can attempt to settle the debt for a lump sum payment and report any amount forgiven over $600 as income on your tax return or you can enter into a repayment plan with the creditor for either the full balance or an adjusted balance. The best option for you depends on numerous factors including but not limited to: your income, assets, other debt, and future purchases you plan on making.


There is no short answer to "can I file bankruptcy?" but without knowing your situation and just answering the basic question of even though a lawsuit has been filed can you file bankruptcy on a debt, the answer is yes. The filing of the law suit does not prevent a debt from being discharged in bankruptcy.