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FAQs on Debt Defense in Washington & Oregon

Read how our experienced Vancouver WA debt defense attorneys answer frequently asked questions (FAQs) about debt lawsuit defense, debt collection, junk debt buyer, and more information about consumer debt in Washington and Oregon.

How Much Does Debt Defense Cost?

Everything we do at Northwest Debt Relief law firm is by flat fee only and we offer reasonable payment plans making debt defense affordable. There are no hidden charges.

Call Tom McAvity for a free phone appointment at 866-388-5106. I’ll review ALL of your debts and explain ALL of your options; then (and only then) will you be able to make the RIGHT choice. When we end this lawsuit – you will have your life back! The call is free, but the peace of mind you’ll have afterward is priceless. One call really CAN change it all!

Can a Creditor or Law Firm Sue Me for Debt?

All debt collection efforts are regulated by federal laws and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). This means that if your creditor intends to collect a debt on you, they have the legal capacity to appear in a courtroom to file a debt lawsuit against you. Worse, when they win, you may face a higher debt amount that includes their attorney fees for the lawsuit, plus other costs if the creditor can prove to the court that you really own the debt.

What Should I Do if I Get a Debt Lawsuit Notice?

The last thing you should do is to ignore it! Some debtors are overconfident that they do not owe debts, and decide to just toss the notice and forget about it until it’s too late. This is a big mistake! When these correspondences or letters from debt collection firms are ignored, they can ask the court to issue a default judgment in the case. When this happens, you lose the case automatically by virtue of not responding to the notices sent to you by your creditor. 

What Is A Default Judgment?

When this judgment is issued, the debtor will be forced to repay the debt, have wages garnished by the debt collection agency or law firm, have a lien placed on valuable properties or your home, and have your accounts emptied. 

I Got a Copy of a Lawsuit Filed Against Me, Should I respond?

If you are going it alone, failing to respond could result in you paying more money than what you actually owe, including the imposition of attorney fees. Also, failing to respond means the creditor gets a judgment quickly. In doing so the creditor quickly has the ability to garnish your paycheck or empty your account.

I was not served properly, what do I do?

Proper service is not something you can determine. You may be right, but unless the court is aware of the bad service, they will assume it was correct. Unfortunately, the standard for good service is rarely what we saw on TV growing up. It rarely requires the creditor to actually hand off the lawsuit to  you personally. You must respond to the lawsuit even if not served properly. If you don’t, the court will enter a judgment against you.

Unfortunately even a finding of bad service is not going to keep the creditor from serving you again or simply suing you again after your present case is dismissed, we find that it is generally better to get the matter resolved quickly rather than leave it hanging over your head.

How do I vacate a Default Judgment?

The only way to vacate a default judgment is by court order. This can be achieved in two ways. First, where the parties agree to set aside the judgment, a stipulated order vacating the default can be submitted. Unfortunately, this can be extremely difficult to obtain. Second, you can file a motion with the court requesting that the default judgment be set aside. In order to prevail, you must normally demonstrate  that either you were not served properly or that you qualify under “excusable neglect”. If you are going to ask that a default judgment be set aside, you must do so quickly.

What will they be able to do if they get a judgment?

In both Oregon and Washington, a judgment creditor can levy your bank accounts, garnish your wages, lien your home and seize certain assets. They can also force you to come into court and submit to a judgment debtor’s exam, levy your bank accounts, and seize certain assets. Under some circumstances, they can force you to appear in court to answer questions about what you own.

Can I Go to Jail for not responding to a Collection Lawsuit?

You can not be put in jail for not contesting a collection lawsuit. You can, however, at least theoretically, end up in jail if you fail to appear for a scheduled judgment debtor exam scheduled for you to answer questions about your finances and assets. 

In Need of Debt Defense? Call Us!

Facing a Debt Lawsuit? We Can Help!

Northwest Debt Defense Law Firm

650 NE Holladay St, Suite 1640
Portland, OR 97232, United States

NW Debt Defense Law Firm is a Debt Relief Agency. Where appropriate we file petitions for relief under the Bankruptcy Code solely for consumers in the District of Oregon. We represent both Oregon and Washington consumers in collections law suits in Oregon and Washington state courts.


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