Dena Standley | October 19, 2022
Summary: The statute of limitations on debt is the time period that a debt collector can sue someone for a debt they owe. In Vermont, the statute of limitations on credit card debt is 6 years, and whne you make a payment on an account, it resets the clock. If you are being sued for a debt you owe, SoloSuit can help you take a stand and win in court.
Every state enforces different laws when it comes to strict time limits for filing a civil lawsuit. This time period is called the statute of limitations. Typically, the statute of limitations exists to protect consumers from being sued for old debts. It also removes the indefinite threat of a lawsuit which can eventually be used as blackmail in some cases.
Because each state has a different law based on the statute of limitations on specific debts, where you live will determine this. Even if you incurred the debt elsewhere, it is according to your state of residence. The laws of the statute of limitations vary greatly, but the statute of limitations on credit card debt in Vermont is six years under Tit. 12 §511.
The statute of limitations is a law setting the maximum amount of time that a debt collection agency or creditor is able to pursue a lawsuit against you for owing a debt. Although the length of time for the statute of limitations varies from state to state, typically it ranges from four to 20 years. In the state of Vermont, the statute of limitations allows a debt collector to bring a collection lawsuit against a consumer for up to six years.
It's important to note that different types of debts might carry a unique statute of limitations. In Vermont, most debts have a statute of limitations of six years:
Vermont Statute of Limitations
Deadline in Years
Because the statute of limitations can also apply to consumer debt, it means that a debt collector or creditor will have a specified amount of time in which they may collect on a debt. This can occur on consumer debt, but it depends on the type of debt.
Time-barred debt is debt that has passed the statute of limitations. Although the creditor or debt collector may no longer legally sue a consumer past this point, it does not mean that the consumer no longer owes the money. Time-barred debt simply means that you cannot go to court any longer.
What is important to know is that making any payment towards a time-barred debt may restart the time period of the statute of limitations. This means that if you pay on a credit card, borrow more money from a loan, or take action of any kind, the statute of limitations may restart, and you may be given a summons to appear in court.
If you notice that suddenly debt collectors begin contacting you after a few years of a debt existing, it may be because the statute of limitations will soon expire. In this case, they may feel that they have nothing left to lose, and therefore, they might violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).
The FDCPA protects consumers from unfair debt collection practices in all 50 states. Although this is a completely different issue from the statute of limitations, oftentimes they do go hand in hand. If the debt collector forces you to make even one payment on the debt, then it will reset the statute of limitations, and you may then be sued for a debt.
If a debt collector violates the FDCPA, even if you do start the statute of limitations over, you will not need to wait another six years. Instead, you will have grounds to file a counterclaim.
If a debt collector has used any of these tactics to get you to pay off a debt, you may be able to file a counterclaim against them and get compensation of up to $1,000 per violation:
The statute of limitations is a defense used when fighting a debt. After ignoring a debt for some time, a debt collector will summon you to court in order to sue you for a debt lawsuit. During this time you have the opportunity to defend yourself by responding to the case.
The most important thing to remember is that if you do not respond to the lawsuit within the deadline, then you will receive a default judgment. This means you will automatically lose the suit, and the debt collectors can garnish your wages or put liens on your property in order to get the money. In Vermont, you have 21 days to respond to a debt lawsuit if it is a regular civil case and 30 days if it is a small claims case ($5,000 in question or less).
If the statute of limitations has expired, then it can be used as an affirmative defense in your Answer. SoloSuit can help you assert your affirmative defenses in your Answer document.
If you cannot prove that the statute of limitations has expired, then you have two other options. The first is to prove the debt is not yours, and the second is to prove there has been an FDCPA violation. If you cannot do any of these things, then you should attempt to negotiate the debt as a settlement. Just remember not to ignore the debt because this will lead to nothing other than a poor credit report and garnishments.
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>>Read the FastCompany article: Debt Lawsuits Are Complicated: This Website Makes Them Simpler To Navigate
>>Read the NPR story on SoloSuit. (We can help you in all 50 states.)
Here's a list of guides for other states.
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Need more info on statutes of limitations? Read our 50-state guide.
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