Consumer Protection Law
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If there's no lawsuit already filed and won, it would be too late for them to do so. The statute of limitations on open accounts (credit card debt) in Texas is 4 years. That means within 4 years of the date last paid, they can sue you, but cannot successfully sue you afterward.
Note that if the statute of limitations has run, that does not mean that the debt has been forgiven as a matter of law.
The debt is still valid, but they just cannot enforce it.
As for your credit report, that's not unusual because adverse events can only be reported for 7 years.
That means that since it's been more than 7 years since breach, they cannot, as a matter of Federal law (the Fair Credit Reporting Act) actually report it.
It's not unusual that debt collectors will purchase bad debt for pennies on the dollar, and attempt to collect against that.
But again, since the statute of limitations has run, they would not actually be able to sue (and therefore could not get a lien).
Okay, so regardless of what state the debt 'lives now', because I live in Texas they cannot enforce a judgement correct? Do I respond to the collector, and if so, how do I ensure that a judgement is not filed against me?
They can't file a "judgment" against you without first suing you. A judgment is a document that says that they won a lawsuit.
So if they have not sued, they cannot successfully sue.
okay, that is helpful. They continue to say they are going to serve me so I'massuming if I avoid being served then I cannot be sued.
You can tell them that you know the statute of limitations has expired 3 years ago, and that, while you don't acknowledge that you owe anything, you're not going to PAY anything.
No. If they've already sued you, you can be served outside the statute of limitations, but that's unlikely because that would mean that it's at least a 3 year old case.
IT sounds like empty threats to me.
They want to scare you to pay something (and note that if you pay something, that could reopen the statute of limitations, which could mean that they could potentially sue in the future0
okay. I have received a letter asking for a 'discounted' payment to settle the debt so I would assume that they haven't sued. I don't see anything on my credit report and haven't been to court nor received court documents so I'm assuming I haven't been sued
Exactly. Again, they probably purchased this debt for pennies on the dollar, and are hoping that you will pay more than they paid.
But they have nothing actually on you.
They're hoping that you don't know your rights.
would it be in my best interest to write a letter to them regarding the statute of limitations that I am now aware of and not to contact me again?
You could certainly do that. You can tell them that you're not going to pay anything because you know the statute of limitations has run. Say that you deny that you owe anything in the first place, and tell them to cease communications with you.
and does it matter that my employe is in Tennessee?
It matters where you're residing.
okay, you have been most helpful. I appreciate your time!
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Excellent service! Thanks again.
You're welcome, and again, good luck to you!