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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
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Experience:  Lawyer
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We were sued by a junk debt buyer and list in court. The lawyer

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We were sued by a junk debt buyer and list in court. The lawyer got the rules relaxed so the only needed to prove it was "likely" that the company owned the debt. The did not have paperwork to definitively prove the owned it. The amount being sued for was over $12,000 so it sounded like the rules probably shouldn't be relaxed because the amount was so high. Is this the case?

Court was Monday. The company is still calling our house twice a day. Is this against the Fair Debt Collections Act?
In full disclosure we did hire a lawyer to handle this. We know that there are no guarantees if you take something to court but the lack of follow through, communication and fervor in arguments has made us reticent to pay any more money to ask these questions.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Consumer Protection Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 9 months ago.
Hi,

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry to hear that this happened.

In any civil case, the standard of proof is "by a preponderance of the evidence," which means essentially, "it is more likely than not" that you owed the debt and that the debt buyer bought it. Definitive proof "beyond a reasonable doubt" is only offered in criminal cases.

If you're saying that no reasonable person, viewing the evidence, would have believed that the company bought the debt, then you may have grounds for appeal. But if the only issue is that they didn't 100% prove absolutely that they bought the debt, that is unfortunately allowed in a civil case.

In Maryland, Small Claims tends to be for $5,000 or less and it is true that the rules are sometimes relaxed in Small Claims Court. The District Court is authorized to hear both Small Claims and claims up to $30,000. If you believe that the judge abused his discretion in applying Small Claims rules to a case of $12,000, then that could also be a basis for appeal. But you should know that the standard of review is very favorable to the divorce judge. If anyone could look at the evidence they presented and believe that you likely owe the debt, the decision will unfortunately be upheld.

If you have any questions or concerns about what I've written, please reply so that I may address them. It's important to me that you are 100% satisfied with the service I provide. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so that I get credit for answering your question. Thank you.
Customer: replied 9 months ago.

That is not what was implied by our lawyer. There was an offer on the table and she implied that they didn't have a good case. It's seems that with these rules they don't need much of one.


 


 


Could you please answer the second part of the questions about them still calling the house?

Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 9 months ago.
I'm sorry that I missed that part.

They can call your house unless or until you send them a letter, via certified mail, telling them not to. Once they get that letter, they must cease calling and collect via other means, or you can sue for up to $1,000. Their lawyer can't call your house if you have a lawyer (that would be against the rules of professional conduct), but the party can.
Customer: replied 9 months ago.

Ok. Thank you. My reading of the rules and law were naive in that that they were actually fair.


 


$1000 is nothing to them, why would they even care if they harass us...


 


Have a good day.

Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 9 months ago.
$1,000 per telephone call adds up.

Have a good day.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Satisfied Customers: 19870
Experience: Lawyer
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