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Sued twice for the same debt

Discussion in 'Other Debt, Collection, Garnishment' started by AnnD, May 1, 2019.

  1. AnnD

    AnnD Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Jurisdiction:
    Texas
    In 2012 I was sued by a debt collection law firm for a credit card debt that I defaulted on. I paid a lawyer to settle the debt and subsequently paid the agreed to settlement amount over a 13 month period. I sent these payments to the debt collection law firm by money order as (advised by my lawyer) so they couldn't track any personal bank account of mine. As per the rule 11 agreement I signed, that firm would file a notice of non-suit/dismissal when all funds were received. After I sent the last payment, I left several voice mails to confirm that the last payment was received, and never received any response. My lawyer had since left the firm and his replacement told me not to worry, As long as my payments were made everything should be fine.
    Hindsight moment, I totally should have been worrying and pushing to make sure this was officially completed. Apparently, it was far from completed.

    Fast forward to 2018 and my law firm contacts me that they received a notice of trial...from a completely different debt collection law firm for this same debt. I told them I paid the debt, sent the payment dates and copies of the money order stubs. A week later, they come back to me and tell me that the debt collection law firm that I was paying had filed bankruptcy, closed (what!) and that there was no way of contacting them to confirm my payments. So basically, this 'new' case was legit because the previous settlement was never closed - it just appears as though I never made the payments because that law firm never confirmed it. I don't understand that at all, and my law firm won't explain anything else to me without another $2000 retainer. I'm not very confident of their ability to represent me and finish this case appropriately at this point.
    I found this site and here I am asking for some much needed advice on what to do next. Should I try to get copies of the cashed money orders? Will it even make a difference at this point if I prove that I paid it already to a now non-existent debt collection law firm? Am I pretty much forced to settle with this new debt collection law firm? Start over with a different law firm? Is there anything I can do or paperwork I can file myself that would make any difference? Any advice is much appreciated, thanks in advance.
     
  2. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You were probably scammed by Debt Collection Scavenger 1, who took your loot; then sold the paper to Scummy Debt Scavenger 2.

    Your dilemma is why it is dangerous and risky to ever settle a debt with a sleazebag, debt scavenger.

    Had you settled with the ORIGINAL debtor it often ends as planned.

    When you settle with a debt scavenger, you very often get your cash scammed and the paper slammed (sold) to an even sleazier debt scavenger.

    The safest way to eliminate debt you can't pay is to investigate a chapter seven bankruptcy.




    This happens more than most would know.


    I suggest you discuss the instant matter at hand with other law firms or lawyers, then sweat how your former law firm that failed you AFTER you've addressed the rabid beast knocking on your door ready to steal more of your loot.




    You possess proof of the agreement, payments you made, to settle the debt.

    What you've done should forestall the hungry beast from eating you again.

    That said, start interviewing lawyers, find one you trust; retain the firm and "git 'er done".

    Time is of the essence, which is why you should start interviewing lawyers tomorrow.

    It'll take a very skilled lawyer to keep the big, bad wolf from eating you, again.
     
  3. AnnD

    AnnD Law Topic Starter New Member

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    Thank you so much Army Judge, I really appreciate you taking the time to give me advice. I am researching new lawyers, I will be making calls tomorrow morning. I will probably have more questions on here once I talk to them!
     
  4. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You have to be the judge as to whom you trust.

    Friends, coworkers, relatives are good sources from which to seek recommendations, also your county and state bar association, and the various social media rating systems.

    Happy hunting and good luck.

    PS:

    Texas' constitution protects and shields your assets from these creeps.
    Your wages can't be levied against for a private, unsecured debt.
    How much did you previously pay?
    How much tribute does the latest scammer allege you must pay?
     
  5. adjusterjack

    adjusterjack Super Moderator

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    Let's start with this:

    Go to the courthouse, go directly to the courthouse, do not pass Go, do not collect $200.

    Get the case file. Buy copies of every scrap of paper in the file. Do that tomorrow. Bring the case file home. Come back to this thread and tell us what's in the file.

    Having the file may help you decide what to do next.

    Yes. And do it quickly.
     
    AnnD likes this.
  6. AnnD

    AnnD Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I spoke with 2 different lawyers today and sent them all of the documents I had. Both of them were very professional and patient with the amount of questions I had - which was a lot. They were also interested in the case information that they could pull up online, each of them stated that it looked odd and incomplete. I've sent each of them the documents I have for their review. There are two more lawyers that I plan on talking to tomorrow, I'm also going to the court house tomorrow to see what I can get from the case file. I've sent the money order stubs in to Western Union to get copies of the cashed checks, it will take up to 30 days to process and return the copies to me.

    The original judgement in the case was for $8229, after much back and forth I ended up settling for 3k which I paid over the course of 1 year.

    Thanks again for the advice and direction, I am very grateful. I will keep posting on my progress with the case.
     
  7. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    You're off to a great start, just stay with it, because the system often works to discourage people.

    You're making good progress.
     
  8. AnnD

    AnnD Law Topic Starter New Member

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    I'm back...but not with any good news. I've spoken with 6 law firms, all ended up declining my case. The reasons have varied from the age of the case to a conflict of interest with the opposing attorneys to just flat out if I don't have proof of payment nothing can be done for me. Sigh. I'm still waiting on the money order traces from Western Union. They cashed my check for payment last week, hoping I will get them soon.

    I'm continuing my search for an attorney, but I'm losing hope (and time)rapidly.
     
  9. army judge

    army judge Super Moderator

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    A chapter seven personal bankruptcy might be worth considering.

    Why not talk to a couple bankruptcy lawyers, or research doing it yourself (pro se)?

    Whatever you decide, you'll learn something.

    Bankruptcy does work as intended, its one of the few things our legislators correctly created, although they can't help "tinkering" with it to benefit the lousy, evil money lenders.
     

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