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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Satisfied Customers: 103976
Experience:  Attorney experienced in commercial litigation.
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I am being sued by capital one for just over $4000. I tried

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I am being sued by capital one for just over $4000. I tried to settle with their lawyers for $1,000 but the lowest they would go was over $3000, so it was unsuccessful. I filed my answer to the court denying the charges against me. Yesterday papers arrived with my court date that said I had to attend mediation first. I figured that I would be best off denying the debt entirely vs. only the amount. I have received nothing regarding the cc since it was a part of a debt management plan years ago. I need advice on how to deal with mediation without admitting the debt incase it does go to trial. Also I need advice on what I do to deny the claim in court especially because I don't understand legal talk at all and I'm worried about being intimidated by capital one's lawyers. I am unemployed and have no assets if they were to get a judgement against me.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

You have a right to serve the plaintiff (credit card company) with a Request for Production of Documents and demand they produce a contract with your signature and proof that you made the purchases they are alleging as part of the amount of the debt by producing receipts with your signature. You should send that off NOW, well before the court date or mediation. They have 30 days to respond and provide you the information from the date you send them the Request for Production.

You need to maintain that they have no signed contract or proof that you agreed to any of these terms or even made any of these charges if you plan on denying the debt. In mediation, their attorneys will not intimidate you, since the process occurs with a neutral mediator and all of the offers go from their attorney to the mediator who presents them to you and all of your counter offers go from you to the mediator to the plaintiff's attorney. You also need to let the mediator and other party know you have no assets, so even if they obtain a judgment there is nothing you have they could collect from, which makes it in their best interest to come to some settlement.

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Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you. Is there a form I would send them to request for production of documents or do I just type up a letter demanding these proofs?
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your response.

Here is a sample form from IA Request for Production of Documents for you to see the format. While it may be for a different topic, the law and rule for production is the same. Here is another Sample Request for Production.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX make sure I don't end up doing this backwards, I would list capital one & law firm as the petitioner and myself as the respondent? I know this should be obvious but I want to be sure.
Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
You would list Capital One as the petitioner, the law firm represents them, so you do not list them as petitioner unless this is a collection agent firm suing you (look at the copy of the lawsuit you received and you would copy the petitioner just as it appears on the title of the lawsuit). You are the respondent.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I have one last question. I am being sued under my maiden name. Do I need to use my old last name since that is what was put on the papers or should I be using my married name as that it was my name actually is?

Expert:  Law Educator, Esq. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for the follow up.

You would use your maiden name and in parentheses you would put (A.K.A "your married name") this way when you sign your name you can sign your normal signature. You can also just continue it in your maiden name, since getting married is known as a common law name change and not a court name change that invalidates your maiden name. Your choice on this one and either is acceptable.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Satisfied Customers: 103976
Experience: Attorney experienced in commercial litigation.
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