You are here:

Collections Law/Tax garnishment unifund


I had an old credit card debt that was originally a fraudulent account. My mother was paying bills while I was out of town because she was using a few of my cards but was blindly paying them.  Then the card kept increasing she called me to see if I was using that card I told her I had no knowledge of that card and she stopped paying. I called chase and told them that there really was a card opening my name that I didn't have and my mother was paying it and didn't know.  The sent me an affidavit and a copy of the payment.  I signed it stating I had no knowledge and the purchases didn't match with where I was at the time. The investigated and told me there wasn't enough evidence to support my reasoning and I was responsible. I talked to them for a few months department to department with no help. I gave up maybe not the best solution.  Come to find out it was my cousin who got the card and was house sitting for me. He killed himself a few years later. Since that the statute of limitations ran out(2012) and the card isn't on my credit. I then as of this year got a garnishment notice from unfunded for taxes.  I then got an alert on my credit of public records.  I thought it was a scam 2 of the report in agencies removed it one didn't. I contacted the court about it and they said in 2010 unfunded was awarded the judgements.  I was never served or notified of any suit. Then this was a garnishment notice dated in oct2012 and I received it a week ago. I am in Michigan and the lawyer for unfunded is in Ohio. I am not sure if they have a satellite office in Michigan. I was told to consult a lawyer before contacting them so they can't cover there mistakes if any.  I was wondering what can I do?  I don't work my credit is excellent and I don't owe anyone.  This seems not legal and sad to me that companies can do this.  Any help or lawyer reference in Michigan would be appreciated.  Every lawyer is bankruptcy and I don't feel that it's fair.  The original amount was 12k now on this letter its 15k. Please help...

You didn't say what court entered the judgment -- if it is in Ohio or Michigan and whether it is close by.  The judgment is the big problem, whether or not you were properly served with the complaint.  The judgment remains good unless you make a formal motion to set it aside on the grounds that you were never served or given any opportunity to defend.  And I don't see how you could set it aside on your own.  

You can, of course, ask the Unifund attorney for a copy of the complaint, proof that you were served, etc., but he doesn't have to be helpful.  If he isn't, someone needs to review the court record and see how and why the judgment was entered without notification.  I really see no alternative.  I'm sorry to have to tell you that.

If you move to have the judgment set aside (which isn't easy, and there probably are time limits on doing so), you would need to show (if only through an affidavit that you sign) that you were not the person who signed for or used the card.  The fact that there were payments made on the card in your name makes it that much harder.

Collections Law

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Michael T. Hertz


I can answer most questions concerning bankruptcy, whether business or personal, including questions by debtors, creditors, persons interested in purchasing assets from bankruptcy estates, and the like. Also have expertise in tort law, French and Canadian law.


Practiced bankruptcy for 27 years in California and taught bankruptcy for three years in Maine. This included Chapters 7, 9, 11, 12 and 13 cases, representing debtors, creditors (secured and unsecured), bankruptcy trustees, creditors committees, and persons interested in purchasing assets from bankruptcies. Debtors included persons with virtually no money up to large corporations.

Inactive member of the Bar of the State of California. Nonpracticing member of the Bar of Massachusetts. Formerly member of the Maine Bar and conseil juridique in France. Certified by National Committee on Accreditation in Canada.

Georgetown Law Review; California Bankruptcy Journal; Maine Law Review; Dalhousie Law Journal; University of Toronto Law Journal.

Harvard Law School (J.D. 1970; cum laude) and Pomona College (B.A., 1967; cum laude)

Awards and Honors
Selected as a "Superlawyer" in 2005 and 2006 for Northern California.

©2017 All rights reserved.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]