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Barrister
Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 22653
Experience:  Attorney with 14 years experience
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I have been suedby a credit card company. It was a joint credit

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I have been suedby a credit card company. It was a joint credit card for my ex-wife and I. She assumed the debt of this credit card in our stipulated agreement during our divorce. I was served in September and didn't realize I had to respond within 30days. I responded last week and on the very same day the credit card company's lawyers filed a default and now I have a hearing in July for a settlement hearing. How do I proceed from here?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Hello and thank you for using JA! My goal is to provide you with excellent service and help with your legal problem.
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Did you file an answer to the complaint within the 30 days?
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Thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

no. i didn't realize i only had 30 days. i filed my response last week.


 

Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Ok, then what they have moved for is a default judgment against you for failing to respond within the 30 day deadline.
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The problem here is that even if a judge in a divorce action made your ex responsible for the debt, the credit card company has no duty to abide by that order because the account was opened prior to any divorce action. So as far as they are concerned, you are both still legally liable for the debt. What the judge did in the divorce was give you legal grounds to sue her for any damages you incur if ex doesn't pay the debt. The judge can't override the orginal agreement where you were both liable for the debt.
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So at this point, your recourse would be to file suit against your ex for breaching the agreement for anything that you have to pay towards the account.
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Thanks.

Barrister

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If you need further help, just reply to me via the “REPLY” button and I will be happy to continue.

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I cannot enter into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

they said I wasn't in default at the clerks office as of yet. so now i have a mandatory settlement conference. does everything you said still apply?

Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Well, that would be extremely unusual if you were served in September and only recently responded. Typically once that 30 days runs, it is over and they can move for a default judgment. But if the court has put off giving them a default judgment, then that is good for you as you can present evidence of the judge's order that she it liable for the debt.
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But as far as the law is concerned, you are both still liable for the debt because the contract for the card was entered in prior to any divorce decree ordering her to pay.
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With that said, your recourse would still be to sue ex for the debt under a breach of contract action since she has defaulted on the judge's order for her to pay the debt.
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If you can settle the debt in July for some amount, then you could sue ex for that amount and get a judgment against her. But if it were me, I would sue her now for the full amount of the debt because she has violated the court's order to pay it. If you are later able to settle it for less, great, but if not then you would have a judgment against ex that you could go after her for, possibly by garnishing her wages if she had a job.
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Thanks.

Barrister

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Please don't forget to rate my service "OK" or higher. It is only then that I receive credit for my work.

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If you need further help, just reply to me via the “REPLY” button and I will be happy to continue.

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I cannot enter into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

do i sue her in civil court, small claims, family law?? would you suggest I get a lawyer?

Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
How much is the credit card debt?
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Thanks
Barrister
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

$4775.45

Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
Ok, that is well below the CA small claims limit of $10K so I would suggest suing her in small claims court. You dont' need an attorney and the clerk will have all the forms you need to file the suit. To prove your case, essentially all you would need is the order from the court where she is assigned the debt and any notice from the creditor where they are suing you because she isn't paying it. You dont' need an attorney and you can get your court costs in addition to the damages for the credit card.
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Thanks.

Barrister

.

Please don't forget to rate my service "OK" or higher. It is only then that I receive credit for my work.

.

If you need further help, just reply to me via the “REPLY” button and I will be happy to continue.

.

I cannot enter into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

I am also planning on getting married. will this issue effect my new wife and her income once we are married if this isn't resolved? is there any negative impact to getting married before this is resolved?

Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
No, a spouse's prior debts do not become the new spouse's debts just because they get married. They would be considered your separate debts unless your new spouse formally agrees in writing to be responsible for them.
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So no, she wouldn't become responsible for your debts just by getting married.
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Thanks.

Barrister

.

Please don't forget to rate my service "OK" or higher. It is only then that I receive credit for my work.

.

If you need further help, just reply to me via the “REPLY” button and I will be happy to continue.

.

I cannot enter into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Ok. I have one final question...and you have been very helpful by the way and I will rate you as such.


When I do get married, can my ex-wife take me back to court for more child support because of my new wifes income? My fiance has got three kids, two of which live with us. Can my child support be reduced at all by having to support more people?

Expert:  Barrister replied 1 year ago.
When I do get married, can my ex-wife take me back to court for more child support because of my new wifes income?
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Technically no, but indirectly yes. What I mean by this is that your wife's income is not related to your child support in any way and it can't be taken into consideration. But what they can do is calculate if your "disposable income" has gone up because you got married. Typically it may because you are combining households...one housing payment, one utilitly payment, one food bill, etc. all instead of two separate ones. So if the amount you are spending on these items goes down due to combining households, your disposable income would go up and the ex could request that the child support be adjusted accordingly.

My fiance has got three kids, two of which live with us. Can my child support be reduced at all by having to support more people?
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Now this is the flip side of the coin...if your disposable income actually goes down due to the marriage because you are having to contribute to more expenses, then you could argue that your support obligation should go down. But the truth of it is that if these aren't your kids, it will be hard to get a judge to agree to reduce any amount because you have no legal duty to support them. Now if you adopted them, the makes them your legal children and could affect any amount you would have to pay ex.
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.

Thanks.

Barrister

.

Please don't forget to rate my service "OK" or higher. It is only then that I receive credit for my work.

.

If you need further help, just reply to me via the “REPLY” button and I will be happy to continue.

.

I cannot enter into an attorney client relationship, this is a public forum, and all posts are available for public viewing. There is no duty of confidentiality that attaches to any posts. The information provided is not a substitute for a local attorney’s legal advice.

Barrister, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 22653
Experience: Attorney with 14 years experience
Barrister and 4 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you

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