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cfortunato, Attorney
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Satisfied Customers: 8023
Experience:  Bankruptcy professor.
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I have received 2 summons to appear in court for civil lawsuits

Resolved Question:

I have received 2 summons to appear in court for civil lawsuits againts me for money I owe to a credit card, and to an oil company. What exactly happens if I do not appear in court? I own a house, if they put a lien on it what exactly does that mean to me?

If I decide to file for personal bankruptcy, when would I have to do so in order for it to get rid of these lawsuits? How much does/ or can personal bankruptcy cost?

Can I avoid showing up in court by contacting the company I owe money to and trying to work out a payment plan/reduced amount? Or would I have to contact the lawyers?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Bankruptcy Law
Expert:  cfortunato replied 7 years ago.

Hi JACustomer,

If you do not show up to court, the creditors will get judgments for the full amounts they are asking for, and these amounts will be due right away. If you do show up, you can usually negotiate a lesser amount in addition to a payment schedule.

The judgment can be used to garnish wages and bank accounts, and to place liens on property. They cannot force the sale of your house - though - unless it has more than $150,000 equity.

You can avoid showing up for court by contacting the law firm, not the creditor they are representing.

It costs $1500 - $2000 to file a Bankruptcy. You can file at any time, before or after the creditors get a judgment, but it will be easier if you do it before the creditors place liens on your property.

cfortunato and 2 other Bankruptcy Law Specialists are ready to help you