Collections Law/Old debt

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Question
Hello Michael, and thank you for in advance for your help.  This is a fantastic thing you do here.

I recently received a collections letter from LVNV FUNDING LLC regarding a debt from over ten years ago.  The letter is giving me options to pay the debt and honestly, I could easily do the 129 dollar one time payment option.  This debt has been off my credit report for years and I have built my credit score  up to over 700 now. I'm aware that the company is a "zombie collections" company and they purchased my debt hoping to make a profit.  My question-or questions-for you are  1) Can anything bad come from me choosing to not pay this debt,  or from me actually paying it?  2) Is there any reason to pay the debt? For example, could me paying this raise my credit score?

Answer
Don't pay and don't promise to pay until you learn whether the debt is barred from collection due to expiration of the statute of limitations.  That statute depends on the type of debt and the state where incurred.  In California, a simply credit card debt expires 4 years after the last payment made.  I don't know which state you are in.

So you need to investigate.  If you pay or promise to pay, you risk waiving the defense of the statute.  

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Michael T. Hertz

Expertise

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.

Experience

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.

Organizations
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.

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

Education/Credentials
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.

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