Are you currently facing a debt collection lawsuit in Texas? While facing a debt lawsuit may feel overwhelming and uncertain, you have legal options to resolve it. Depending on the circumstances specific to your case, you may be able to get the lawsuit dismissed. Below, our Texas debt collection defense attorneys discuss how to get a debt lawsuit dismissed.
Step 1: Schedule a Consultation With a Texas Debt Defense Attorney
If you are being sued for debt collection in Texas, we recommend consulting with an experienced debt defense attorney. An attorney can help you in many ways, from helping you understand your legal options to gathering evidence and representing and defending you through case resolution.
At Warren & Migliaccio, we represent and defend individuals like you in debt collection lawsuits throughout Texas. We have extensive experience and success in helping our clients get debt lawsuits resolved. In some cases, we are able to get a lawsuit against our client dismissed. A few ways we help our clients include, but are not limited to:
If a creditor or debt collector sues you, we encourage you to contact us. During a consultation, we can review the claims against you and help you determine your best options for putting the lawsuit behind you. Call us at (888) 584-9614 or contact us online to schedule your consultation today.
Step 2: Answer the Lawsuit
In Texas, you have a specific amount of time to file a formal response to the lawsuit, depending on the court handling your case. You have 20 days to respond in Texas county and district courts. In Texas justice courts, you have 14 days.
You should always answer the lawsuit within the allotted time frame. You can use our guide about responding to a debt lawsuit to help you with your response. However, we recommend working with an experienced Texas debt defense lawyer to best protect your interests and ensure you do not make any mistakes that could hurt your case.
If you miss this deadline, the debt collector may get a default judgment against you. A default judgment essentially means you lose the case, and the debt collector wins, even if you do not recognize the debt and believe you do not owe it.
Step 3: Collect Evidence to Support the Case Dismissal
In order to get the case dismissed, you need evidence to support the case dismissal. First, you should demand debt validation from the debt collector. Just because someone claims you owe them money does not mean they have the legal right to sue. It is common for debts to be bought and sold multiple times. The debt collector must prove that the debt is yours, that you owe it, and that it has the right to collect it.
You should look for any errors with the debt collector’s claim. Scrutinize the lawsuit for discrepancies, like wrong names, addresses, or debt amounts. Errors can lead to lawsuit dismissal. For example, think about the following questions:
- Do you recognize the debt?
- Has the debt already been paid?
- Do you actually owe the debt, or is it someone else’s debt?
- Is the amount of debt correct?
- Does the debt collector have proof that it has the right to collect it?
You should also assess other factors that may help get the case dismissed, such as:
- Statute of limitations. In Texas, creditors and debt collectors only have a certain amount of time to pursue a debt collection lawsuit. This time limit is called a statute of limitations, and it is four years in Texas. You cannot be sued for the debt if the time limit has passed. Therefore, the lawsuit can be dismissed if a creditor or debt collector sues you after this period.
- Proper service. Were you properly served with the lawsuit? If you were not notified in accordance with Texas law, then the case might be invalid.
If you determine that there are errors in the lawsuit against you, you may be able to get it dismissed.
Step 4: Decide on Your Defense Strategy
Based on the strengths and weaknesses of the debt collector’s case and your financial situation, you and your attorney will decide on a debt collection defense strategy that aligns with your best interests.
For example, if you believe the lawsuit should not proceed and have evidence to support this, you can file a motion to dismiss the lawsuit. Another way to avoid litigation is to negotiate a settlement outside of court. You may be able to negotiate a lower amount than the original claimed debt.
It is also important to understand that even if you cannot get the case dismissed, you may be able to win the lawsuit. You may have a strong defense to challenge and fight the lawsuit in court.
Another potential option to explore is bankruptcy, depending on your financial situation. A bankruptcy attorney from our firm can explore this option with you to determine whether you may qualify to discharge your debts through bankruptcy.
You may also consider counter-suing the debt collector. For example, you might have grounds to counter-sue if the debt collector violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).
Schedule a Consultation With Warren & Migliaccio Today
Facing a debt collection lawsuit in Texas is undoubtedly stressful but know that you have legal options to resolve it and put it behind you. At Warren & Migliaccio, we help individuals all over Texas facing debt collection lawsuits from creditors and debt collectors.
If you are currently facing a debt lawsuit, do not hesitate to contact us about your situation. We are happy to review the claims against you, discuss how to potentially get a debt lawsuit dismissed in Texas, and determine how we can help you.
If we cannot get your case dismissed, we can help you resolve it in other ways. For example, you may have a solid defense to fight the case in court, or you may be able to negotiate a settlement that is less than the original amount of debt claimed. Call us at (888) 584-9614 or contact us online, and we will be in touch with you soon to schedule a consultation.