Collections Law/Question on Debit Collection Legality
I received a letter at an old address from a law firm stating that they are collecting a debt from a previous collection agency. I had no knowledge of this, and have no idea what it's for. Someone had told me to look it up in the Wisconsin Circuit Court Access Page. I looked it up. Apparently a collection company Resurgence Financial had filed a small claims suit against me. The address they have for me is an old address. I know enough to know that they should have severed me with papers, and to this date I have never received these papers. A judgment was made against me for an initial amount of $1700 some dollars. I am now just finding out about this in 2015. I am assuming interest has mounted on it and they say I now owe $4200 some dollars. The address that the current attorney has I no longer live at, but my fiancée still owns it. So the renter there passed it on to him to give to me. That is the only way I would have known about this. I have no idea what it's for. I need to know because this company Resurgence Financial, from my research, has turned up they have done this to many other people. The attorney that they hired should have had a process service company serve the papers upon me, and they didn't even have the right address. I can prove with bills, and papers showing I sold the house at the service address WAY before they served me. So I never saw that, and I think I would have had to sign it. Can this company legally do this? I mean I was not hiding my whereabouts. They had ways to find out my current address, and they chose not to. Is there anything I can legally do to get any interest thus far thrown out? Is this a Junk Debit Buyer Law Suit? Here is a page where someone else said that Resugence Financial had a signed affidavit from them and they did NOT sign it. http://www.creditreportproblems.com/Resurgence_Financial_LLC.htm
Any help would be appreciative. I'd like some info on hand before I contact this attorney.
I just saw your question a few minutes ago and I don’t know if you have received an answer yet.
The short answer to your question is that it is possible (in fact, more than possible) that you can get the court judgment against you set aside or vacated. However, time is important because the first question the judge is going to consider is why you took so long to do something about this. I think your explanation will work (that through mere happenstance you just recently found out about the judgment against you, especially when coupled with the evidence you suggest (that you were no longer located at that address at the time the summons and complaint were served).
The negative side to your case is that if you hire an attorney there in Wisconsin to help you do this, the amount they charge you will probably make you reconsider whether you want to spend a thousand dollars or so for attorney fees to deal with a 4,000 debt. I have a law degree and graduated from law school more than 30 years ago. If I helped you with this, I would charge you 100 dollars to have the judgment set aside. Also, if they then got good service on you and tried to go ahead with the lawsuit (which may not happen because of the statute of limitations), I could help you to get that dismissed as well. This is much easier to talk about on the telephone. If you would like to talk about this further, you are welcome to call me anytime you like. I will not charge you just to talk on the phone, and I could explain to you in more detail exactly how you can resolve this problem quickly. If you do nothing, this judgment may come back to haunt you. They could garnish your wages, haul you into court to ask you about your property that they could take to satisfy the judgment, etc. I have dealt with these people (Resurgence) before, and they are a typical collection agency - crooked as a dog’s leg - no better, no worse. If you owned real property at the time the judgment was entered, the judgment in and of itself constitutes a judicial lien against that property that you would have to pay to Resurgence out of any equity you received when you sold that property.
If you want to talk on the phone, I look forward to your call.
Jack Hall, J.D. 915 261-3893