Chloe Meltzer | October 19, 2022
Summary: Are you being sued by Fulton, Friedman, & Gullace for an past due debt? Make the right defense and win your case in court.
When you are past due on a debt, the creditor may assign your debt, or sell it, to a debt collector. This agency will then attempt to collect on that debt. In many cases, you will find yourself being sued. This can be a scary time. Credit card debt delinquency is no joke.
If your debt payments have fallen short, you will be contacted by debt collectors and they may use threatening language. They might call you, threaten to seize your assets, or humiliate you and discuss your debt with your friends or boss. If this happens, you may not know how to respond, but you need to know your rights and how to respond appropriately.
Fulton, Friedman & Gullace, LLP is a debt collection law office. They are located out of Rochester, New York, and have been working since 2008. Many consumers have reported being harassed by Fulton, Friedman & Gullace, LLP. They have turned to the courts to protect their rights.
In late 2011 and early 2012, a California resident allegedly defaulted on a credit card debt. This was assigned and then turned over to Fulton, Friedman & Gullace, LLP to collect the debt. When Fulton, Friedman & Gullace, LLP filed a lawsuit against him, he asked for a validation request. This was not provided until the debtor would provide his bank account details. Hastily he gave these details with explicit directions not to take money out of his account. Fulton, Friedman & Gullace, LLP did not listen, never offered a written agreement, and took out $335 from his bank account. This is a harassment suit.
The FDCPA (Federal Debt Collection Practices Act) protects consumers against unfair debt collection tactics. These might include:
When being sued for debt, you need to understand the process. Typically 180 days after the debt is past due you will receive a phone call or letter in the mail. Then within five days of contact, you should be sent a debt validation letter stating how much you owe, as well as other information such as the name of the creditor and how to dispute the debt.
If you feel you do not owe the debt then you can ask the debt collector for a verification letter. This must be sent within 30 days. If you do feel you owe the debt, you will need to respond and figure out how you plan to pay off the debt. This might be paying it completely, looking to set up a payment plan, or negotiating a settlement.
If you do not do any of these options you can be sued. This will lead to a court date, and if you miss the court date an automatic judgment will be ordered against you. This leads to wage garnishment as well as property liens, and more. Therefore, you need to respond to all notices.
Regardless of you believe you owe the debt or not, you will need to respond to the lawsuit. This can be scary, but if you do not respond with an “Answer” you will have a default judgment placed against you. This will also make it impossible to fight the lawsuit.
Debt collectors are typically hired by the original creditor after default. If you think that you should not owe the debt, you can challenge the lawsuit. Common reasons for challenging the lawsuit include being the wrong person who is being served, or a debt already being paid. In these cases, you can submit this with your Answer, and the debt lawsuit will usually be taken off. When the debt amount is incorrect, you can ask for proof. You legally have the right to do this, and the debt collector must prove your responsibility.
Another reason why you might challenge the lawsuit is that it is past the statute of limitations. This is the longest amount of time that debt can be legally collected on. Typically this ranges from three to twenty years, but on average is around four to six years. This will depend on the state you are being sued in and what type of debt you owe.
If you're disputing the lawsuit, you will need to bring various forms of documentation. This should include information regarding:
There are various things that you can do if you decide to accept the judgment or not. If you want to accept the judgment and avoid going to court, you can settle out of court. This can sometimes be done for a lower cost than the total amount. In this case, you may want to threaten bankruptcy to push the suit along. If you have limited wages, then you may be judgment proof. In this situation, it will mean that you do not make enough money, which means that your wages cannot be garnished.
Regardless of what you decide to do, you need to make a decision that is best for you. Debt lawsuits are nothing to mess with, and above all, you must respond. Otherwise, matters will only get worse.
SoloSuit makes it easy to respond to a debt collection lawsuit.
How it works: SoloSuit is a step-by-step web-app that asks you all the necessary questions to complete your answer. Upon completion, you can either print the completed forms and mail in the hard copies to the courts or you can pay SoloSuit to file it for you and to have an attorney review the document.
"First time getting sued by a debt collector and I was searching all over YouTube and ran across SoloSuit, so I decided to buy their services with their attorney reviewed documentation which cost extra but it was well worth it! SoloSuit sent the documentation to the parties and to the court which saved me time from having to go to court and in a few weeks the case got dismissed!" – James
Here's a list of guides for other states.
Being sued by a different debt collector? We're making guides on how to beat each one.
Is your credit card company suing you? Learn how you can beat each one.
Need more info on statutes of limitations? Read our 50-state guide.
Need help managing your finances? Check out these resources.