A creditor accepted my promise that I will try my best to send him $200 a month towards the payment of a $3000 debt. The first two months I was only able to send $100 each month due to a hardship that the creditor very well know of. The third month I sent $200 but he already got a judgment against me saying that I'm refusing to pay. My wages were eventually garnished until the judgment amount was paid. I even reiterated to him in an email before he filed the suit that I'm not refusing to pay my debt and that I have every intention of paying it until paid in full. Can this be considered abuse of process? If so, what damages can I ask?
Unless you got a written agreement for a payment arrangement, it unfortunately doesn't sound like the creditor was bound to accept your $200/month max payment amounts.
No. Filing a lawsuit to collect a debt that is not being paid when due, or as agreed, is basically using the "process" exactly as it is intended. It is the opposite of "abuse" of the process. Most defenses to a lawsuit would also have had to be raised before a judgment, not after.
Nothing you described sounds like an abuse of legal process. Your borrowed money and apparently breached the contract by not abiding by the original terms. You tried to negotiate a payment plan which the creditor was probably not obligated and then you didn't fulfill the terms you propose. While your circumstances are unfortunate, it sounds like the creditor simply used the legal steps available to collect what you owed.
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