There are three ways you could respond to receiving a court summons for an outstanding debt. You could
A) ignore it,
B) contact the creditor to negotiate a settlement prior to the court date, or
C) go to court.
We DO NOT suggest for you to ignore a legal summons.
This will lead to the court to enter a default judgment against you which could lead to more severe consequences such as wage garnishment, property liens or bank account levies or restrictions put in place.
Depending on your situation:
When receiving a summons for debt collection, we would suggest to first call the creditor listed on the summons to attempt to negotiate a settlement before going to court.
If pursuing a settlement…
Make sure to have it complete by the date stated on the summons by which you will need to file your response to avoid further legal issues.
Unable to reach a settlement?
You will need to file your response to the summons by the assigned response date.
On every summons, there will be a list of complaints made against you. It’s your responsibility to go through the list and respond to these allegations.
It must be done in writing and sent to the reply address prior to the date listed on the summons.
If you receive a summons, look through the allegations and gather any and all documented evidence for your case for each of the complaints.
This way, when your court date comes, you are well prepared to state your case.
You may also want to send the debt collector’s assigned lawyer a formal “request for production.”
This is a document that provides all the information your activity on the debt leading up to delinquency, including the initial agreement with your signature.
Most debt collectors will not be able to produce this as they are only given straightforward information about you such as your name, contact details and the debt you owe when they purchase your debt records.