The accumulation of debt is a natural and normal part of life. Sometimes, however, debts go unpaid or get mishandled. That’s when you enter the world of debt collection. Debt collection can be a scary thing for debtors and creditors alike – there are many unscrupulous debt collectors out there, and the task of navigating debt collection legal landscape can be challenging. We can help.
Our firm regularly represents both real and alleged debtors being sued by debt buyers and other debt collection agencies and firms to help ensure their rights are protected throughout the process. Often times the mere fact that we enter an appearance in a case causes the debt collector to decide the case is not worth the hassle and withdraw the lawsuit. When that’s not the case, however, we are ready to help you either settle the case or, if appropriate, take it to trial. While past results are never a guarantee of future results or results in your individual case, we have a strong history of defeating debt collectors in court either because the debt itself was invalid or because the the debt collector did not meet its legal obligations in order to enforce the debt.
Our firm also at times represents individual and small business creditors seeking to collect on valid debts owed to them. We are not traditional “debt collectors” – we do not make phone calls to debtors, we do not report debtors to credit reporting agencies, and we do not engage in any of the other activities you might associate with debt collectors. Rather, when we handle these cases we are debt collection litigators – if you hire us to collect a past due debt, we assume you have already made extensive efforts to collect the debt yourself and you are ready to proceed with a lawsuit. As a result, when we represent creditors it is through litigation, not other collections tactics. In many cases, depending on the size and nature of the debt, we can represent a creditor on a contingent fee basis, meaning you will not pay us anything except court costs unless we actually collect money.
The world of debt collection can be scary, but it can be even scarier when that debt collection ends up in court. Whether you are a creditor or a debtor, our firm can help you navigate the courtroom aspects of your debt collection matter and help ensure your rights are protected.
Some examples of cases we have handled (again, remembering that past results are no guarantee of future results or of results that could be obtained in your case):
- Represented debtor in Fairfax County Circuit Court being sued by major national bank for more than $70,000. Debtor claimed bank had sent him an offer years earlier to pay a fraction of the amount due and that, while he did not accept that offer by their deadline, he did accept it a few days later and they had accepted his payment. Our firm entered an appearance and demanded a jury trial – the bank decided to withdraw its lawsuit instead.
- Represented alleged debtor in Arlington County Circuit Court being sued by major online bank for more than $16,000. Client claimed to have never applied for the loan at issue or received the funds and believed someone else had stolen her identity and fraudulently taken out the loan. Our firm entered an appearance and demanded a jury trial – after discovery was done the online bank decided to withdraw its lawsuit.
- Represented alleged debtor (pro bono, on appointment with Legal Services of Northern Virginia) in Fairfax County Circuit Court being sued by a lender for more than $30,000. Client claimed that her ex-fiancée had fraudulently put her name on the loan without her consent. Our firm ultimately successfully obtained dismissal of the lawsuit.
- Represented debtor in Loudoun County General District Court being sued for more than $13,000 of credit card debt. Our firm took the matter to trial, correctly anticipating that the creditor would fail to provide necessary evidence and witnesses. As a result, we were able to get the matter dismissed on a motion to strike.
- Represented creditor in Fairfax County Circuit Court who had obtained a judgment against a former tenant more than a decade prior – successfully managed to track debtor down and pursue wage and bank garnishments in order to collect the amount owed with interest.
- Represented small business in Fairfax County Circuit Court that had received a wage garnishment order for one of its employees that created a conflict between obligations owed. Successfully filed an interpleader motion in order to help our client receive guidance from the Court in order to ensure it was in full compliance with its legal obligations.