#1- Telephone or In-Person Interview with a licensed Attorney.
Approximately 10-20 minutes where you can vent, and explain all the things the collection agencies have put you through.
#2- Engage an Attorney to negotiate on your behalf by signing a Representation Agreement.
Once the Agencies are notified that you are represented by an Attorney THEY MUST STOP CALLING! In addition, your representation agreement will state that you will NOT have to pay any Attorney's Fees.
#3- Fax, mail, e-mail, or hand deliver any evidence.
Phone records, collection letters, pictures of caller ID, or any other evidence of harassment. Do not worry if you don't presently have this information, your sworn testimony of harassment can be used as evidence in a court of law.
ONE TO TWO WEEKS LATER:
#4- Review your Attorney's Demand Letter and/or Civil Complaint.
Make sure that all the harassment and inconvenience that the collection agencies have put you through is accurately included in the communication.
TWO TO FOUR WEEKS LATER:
#5- Accept or Reject Settlement Offer.
Most likely, the Collection Agency will offer a lump sum amount for damages and attorneys fees. Under the Federal Fair Debt Collections Practices Act, you are entitled to statutory damages of up to $1,000.00.
COLLECT YOUR MONEY DAMAGES!
#6-Cash Your Check.
Settlement usually means that you must keep the terms confidential and agree NOT to sue in the future for any of the harassment alleged in your Complaint or Demand Letter. The collector also agrees to forever cease collection on the Account. The Settlement check could arrive in soon as one week following your signature on the Settlement Agreement, other companies require four to six weeks to authorize, print, and mail out your check.
This list is provided for informational purposes only, every case is different. Not all plaintiffs will recover monetary damages. Not all defendants will be willing to settle out of court. Litigating a lawsuit is a lengthy process which you should discuss with your attorney relative to the specific facts of your case. © 2010 All Rights Reserved