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    How to answer to a credit card summons

    Jurisdiction / State: California

    i got a summons from a lawyer that is suing me for a credit card debt in bakersfield CA I owe 1020.00 I don't know how to answer it (forms, legal language) I read on the internet that there are ways to answer to the summons and most of the time the lawyers back up. is that true? I can't pay them right now because my wife and 2 older sons can't find jobs. I can't declare bankuptcy because of my job (financial industry) please advise thx


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    Did you get a letter from a lawyer demanding payment, or did you get a letter ordering you to appear in court on a particular date and time?

    If you were served anything other than a summons to appear in court on a specific date and time, then you can simply ignore whatever was sent to you. A letter that says "summons" on it does not make it one.

    How old is the debt? When did you last make payment on it?

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    i got a letter to appear in court with a date a time. last time I made a payment was in december 2009

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    You don't HAVE to file any paperwork. The only thing you need to do is show up at the appointed time.
    You can seek legal help if you want to fight it. If you choose not to fight it and acknowledge the debt then the judge will ultimately order you to pay the debt.
    With that order they will then be able to garnish wages or use other means to collect the debt, but there are limitations to that- and they can't take what you don't have.
    You have some time to decide how you want to handle it.

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    my summons read

    YOU HAVE 30 CALENDAR DAYS AFTER THIS SUMMONS AND LEGAL PAPERS ARE SERVICED TO YOU FO FILE AWRITTEN RESPONSE AT THIS COURT AND HAVE A COPY SERVED ON THE PLAINTIFF A LETTER OR PHONE CALL WILL NOT PROTECT YOU. YOUR WRITTEN RESPONSE MUST BE IN PROPER LEGAL FORM IF YOU WANT THE COURT TO HEAR YOUR CASE. THERE MAY BE A FORM THAT YOU CAN USE FOR YOUR RESPONSE..
    please advise thx

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    Again, you don't HAVE to do anything. It depends on what your intentions are. Do you intend to dispute the debt?

    If you do nothing and appear in court at the given time, you could then ask for a continuance so that you may obtain legal counsel. Everything would just be delayed. Or, if you do not need more time, when you appear in court and acknowledge the debt the court will likely make quick work of this matter and be done with you.

    If you want to file the response you can contact the court to learn the proper format. It is not difficult. It is simply a statement from you indicating your position on the matter.

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