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My situation is similar to one posted last year on this forum, and I need advice.
Last year I ran into debt problems due to the economy (of course) and was unable to pay on credit cards any further (I had three major ones--dummy that I was).
Earlier in the year I found a debt settlement firm to help me, and so far they've settled with Wells Fargo (good news). Bad news, though, is that I was served a civil summons a few weeks ago by a debt collector c/o Sessoms & Rogers, P.A. out of Durham NC. The settlement people I work with are not yet ready to deal with this, since I'm still paying installments to settle with Wells Fargo (this is an HSBC debt, I believe).
Obviously I need to write an answer to this summons. Exactly how do I do this? Since I couldn't afford to continue to pay the creditors I can't afford a lawyer and need advice fast.
Thanks for any help you can give me,

You generally only have 30 days to answer a summons so you better get on it. Plus you might wanna talk to the law firm quickly as well.

They wont wait until you or your debt management program are ready. You are looking at a potential judgement if you dont get this resolved.

Sub: #1 posted on Sat, 10/10/2009 - 22:52

Moderators Cum Industry Expert
(Posts: 17209 | Credits: 4746.14)

Also check with the clerks office to ensure the 30 days are calender days versus business days. In my answer, I drafted it myself, I stated that I am in a "program" and am trying to get enough funds for a settlement. In speaking with my clerk's office, Ohio, she told me the answer does not have to be elaborate what really matters is getting it filed before the deadline. After the answer filed you can file a notice explaining in detail that your in a program, trying to build funds, etc. The notice could titled, "Notice of defendant being "represented by XXXXXXX". If you have any questions always talk to the clerks office or an attorney.

Sub: #2 posted on Sun, 10/11/2009 - 00:04

wchambe641 wchambe641

(Posts: 129 | Credits: 24.48)

Judy, I might could talk with you if you want to search "Chris L in NC" online.

Sub: #3 posted on Sun, 10/11/2009 - 06:23


Thanks for the replies, friends.

I should also mention that the debt settlement folks advised me to answer the summons (which I'm gonna do ASAP), and send a copy to the sheriff's office, the plaintiff's reps, and of course one to them as well. The idea behind this, as I understand it, is to avoid a default judgment that would most certainly occur should I ignore the summons. I was also told this would buy a little time, and avoid unpleasantness like filing for bankruptcy.

My question for the moment is, what does an 'answer letter' entail? Is it just literally what it means, a form(or business) letter of sorts answering the charges? Or is there a literal 'form' one uses? I'm new at this kind of thing, obviously, which is why I'm here.

Sub: #4 posted on Sun, 10/11/2009 - 07:53


Judy2009, if want I can sent you an Answered I filed. Although I am in Ohio, I would image the verbage is similar in all states. Remember, you need to file your answer before the deadline. My answer basically says I am in a program with XXXXX, I do not deny having an account with HBSC but I am questioning the fees, cost and balance. Now where I live, Ohio, I filed an Answer on 10/08/09 and was advised by the clerk that I most likely now have a hearing until the first of the year. Once I receive the notice of a hearing I can, for $5, file for a 60 days continuance as I am trying to funds necessary to offer a settlement. Now I must tell you this, every jurisdicton is difference and since I live in a large city, the courts are overwhelmed with lawsuits. So I always tell people this, call you clerk of courts and/or an attorney. I sorry I failed to menton this, your asked if the Answer can be a form letter, well in my jusridicton the answer is no, I had to follow very specific guidelines in creating my answer.

Sub: #5 posted on Mon, 10/12/2009 - 01:07

wchambe641 wchambe641

(Posts: 129 | Credits: 24.48)

Judy,the gov.of north carolina signed into law this month that states that if debt buyers and and whom ever they have trying to collect for them.should knowif the debt is blocked by the statute of limitation which is 3years for unsecured debts,credit cards,etc,.the law requires the collectors to provide documents proving they own the accounts that they are trying to collect.or they can face up to 4,000.00 per violation.you need to ask sessoms&rogers for a validation letter i doubt that they will send you anything thats the way they are will not send a thing.but a summons for a lawsuit.but just hang in there.it is a law backed by attorney general roy cooper of north carolina.mazzie

Sub: #6 posted on Tue, 10/13/2009 - 00:42


First and foremost, i'm not a attornty or have any formal legal training, I am self taught. But I have purcashed judgements from companies and individuals for the past 8 years and made pretty good living at collecting the money owed. I have prepared my own legal documents to foreclose on many inidividual's personal property if necessary to collect what is owed to me. It's rare that I have actually had to forecolse on the debtor home to get what was owed me, but it sure got thier attention, and the debtor ran me down to get agreeable terms in order to stop the legal action. Having said that, I offer you the following advise based on my personal experience having been on the other side of the side of the issue. 1. Your response to the summons and complaint should be basis for you legal defense that you plan to use in court. But to the best of my knowedgle..........thier is no defense for defult on a loan (meaning to have stop paying as agreed) 2. The matter of the default judgement. The way this happens is if you or your personal repersentive fails to show up in court for trial. Them the judge will rule in favor of the plantiff, there by granting them a Judgement by Default, because you fail to show and therefore had no defense.

3. Aslo remeber that a Default Judgement reneder in a state other than the state where your reside, is not enforceable outside of the state where it was rendered.
However, It can be transfered to another state and filed in your venue, and it will possibly show on your credit. But it can not be enforced by your local official.

Just be advised this will not stop the plainitiff from trying to collect on the judgemen lien. in most case the judgement will not actually state on it that it was renedered by default. It is left up to the defendant to point that out. Because they are betting that you are not aware fact that a "judgements rendered by default is not enforceable outside the state of orgin".

Good luck.....and keep your chin up......... :-)

Sub: #7 posted on Tue, 10/13/2009 - 03:55


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