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#1 of 19 Old 03-17-2008, 07:58 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Cross-posted in TAO

My bank account has been seized by debt collectors. I can't believe this.

I have the lawyer's number, called and left them a voicemail. What do I say? I'm an unemployed mom who is going to school so I CAN pay my debts.

I suspect this is for my student loan, which went into default years ago. I haven't worked in about 6 years so I couldn't pay that. When I tried to make arrangements for small payments, I was told I needed to provide the entire balance (~20K) or nothing. I was willing to work with them, but they wouldn't hear of it.

I am so shocked and miserable right now.

Any ideas, etc, would be very welcome.

~Kiyomi~ Unschooling mom to one very chatty, very amazing 7 year old bundle of boy
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#2 of 19 Old 03-17-2008, 08:12 PM
 
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No advice, but .
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#3 of 19 Old 03-17-2008, 09:41 PM
 
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Yes, they can snab your bank account if they have a judgement against you. Several years ago we got a nasty surprise too.

But I am surprised the gov would do this for a student loan. Was it a private SL? I would find out exactly who did this, and go from there.

I'm also wondering if you are in school, aren't you getting financial aid? You wouldn't get any if you have a defaulted SL, so maybe this is from something else.

I'm so sorry this has happened to you. When we had it happen to us, there really wasn't squat we could do about it. I was just so in shock that is was legal because it can then cause someone to bounce their checks.
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#4 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 04:43 AM
 
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I am a little bit confused if you are in school why your student loans are not in forbearance?
The only way they can seize your bank account is to have obtained a judgment against you which means they had to go to court. Did you get a summons? If not you need to get to the courthouse ASAP.

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#5 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 05:49 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by zersha View Post
But I am surprised the gov would do this for a student loan. Was it a private SL? I would find out exactly who did this, and go from there.

I'm also wondering if you are in school, aren't you getting financial aid? You wouldn't get any if you have a defaulted SL, so maybe this is from something else.
No, it was a Stafford Student loan, the regular government ones. I can no longer get federal aid for the rest of my life. My mom is paying for school now.

This loan is from when I was much younger and stupider.

~Kiyomi~ Unschooling mom to one very chatty, very amazing 7 year old bundle of boy
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#6 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 05:51 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by mum4boys View Post
I am a little bit confused if you are in school why your student loans are not in forbearance?
The only way they can seize your bank account is to have obtained a judgment against you which means they had to go to court. Did you get a summons? If not you need to get to the courthouse ASAP.
I defaulted a number of years ago. I am now ineligible for federal aid.

I never received a summons. I have moved twice in the last year and a half; maybe they sent it to the wrong address?

What do I do since I never received the summons?

Thanks for the info and sympathy, all. It's 5 AM, I can't sleep from this, and I need to be out of the house on the way to school at 9 AM.

It's horrible that this is legal. Just horrible.

~Kiyomi~ Unschooling mom to one very chatty, very amazing 7 year old bundle of boy
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#7 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 07:31 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Kiyomi View Post
I defaulted a number of years ago. I am now ineligible for federal aid.

I never received a summons. I have moved twice in the last year and a half; maybe they sent it to the wrong address?

What do I do since I never received the summons?

Thanks for the info and sympathy, all. It's 5 AM, I can't sleep from this, and I need to be out of the house on the way to school at 9 AM.

It's horrible that this is legal. Just horrible.


Depending on the state you live in most states requires a process server to serve you with the summons and complaint. Even if they can mail it most require more then just mail but some kind of proof that you got it.
This happens all the time you are in and it is illegal. Call your bank and get a copy of the order they used to get the judgment to go after your bank account. Go to the courthouse give them the cause number on the order and in the court file they will have to prove they had you served. Then tell the court clerk you need to file a motion to vacate for lack of proper service. She/He will direct you the paperwork. You should be able to do this immediately in Ex Parte which means only one party is heard. You will need to explain in your motion that you were never served with the summons and complaint. More then likely you will be granted the motion to vacate. You need to immediately take that order to your bank. They will help you get your money back. It is now up to the collection agency to prove that you were served properly or to start over again. Do no ignore this. You need to respond to the complaint regardless whether you owe the money or not or this whole thing will start over again with them garnishing your wages. You can fight this all the way so you can get a payment repayment plan that fits your budget.

If you do a search in this forum about of collection agencies you can find the websites that tell you about your rights. 98% of all collection agencies are scum of the earth and all the want is money. They can careless about you. If you were not served properly this is not legal. Most collection agencies could careless about the law.

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#8 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 07:34 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Kiyomi View Post
No, it was a Stafford Student loan, the regular government ones. I can no longer get federal aid for the rest of my life. My mom is paying for school now.

This loan is from when I was much younger and stupider.

There is not a doubt in my mind this loan was sold to collection agency which happens all the time with defaulted student loans.

Heidi
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#9 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 12:11 PM
 
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No, it was a Stafford Student loan, the regular government ones. I can no longer get federal aid for the rest of my life. My mom is paying for school now.

This loan is from when I was much younger and stupider.
A little OT - You actually could get financial aid again if you rehabilitated your loan. They give you one shot at it, and if you screw up, that's it. If you make your payments for 6 months, you are no longer in default. I had to do this, and I am now eligible for FA again.

I had almost 10K in stafford loans that were in default for over 10 yrs. Like I said before, I am really surprised the gov would do this to a bank account. They did garnish my wages when I worked, and took any tax refunds, but that was it. I would find out exactly who took your money, and where your student loans are currently being held. The gov does sell/assign (not sure which) to a few different collection agencies. Mine was Allied Interstate.

There are also laws about what types of money CAN'T be siezed, so if your money was social security, disability, and maybe child support (I think I read that somewhere), and you can prove that was the source of the money in the bank account, they will have to give it back.
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#10 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 03:46 PM
 
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a recent change in law allows federally guaranteed student loans to garnish your wages, or seize you bank account without a judgement.
it sucks, and it is (in my opinion) unconstitutional.

s

wife to my awesome DH, homeschooling, unassisted birthing, food growing, life loving mama to 5 crazy monkeys. :
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#11 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 04:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by cravenab00 View Post
a recent change in law allows federally guaranteed student loans to garnish your wages, or seize you bank account without a judgement.
it sucks, and it is (in my opinion) unconstitutional.

s
I just looked it up and it says they can take your wages through garnishment and your tax return but nothing about emptying your bank account. They can only take the max of 15% of your wages. It says the rest has to be done through legal action. http://www.ed.gov/offices/OSFAP/DCS/index.html

Heidi
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#12 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 04:12 PM
 
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a recent change in law allows federally guaranteed student loans to garnish your wages, or seize you bank account without a judgement.
it sucks, and it is (in my opinion) unconstitutional.

s
Yikes

Good thing I rehabilitated mine a couple years ago. I would hate having to be scared that our bank account would be cleared out, especially since dh's checks are direct deposited.

I can totally understand taking a percentage of wages (that still leaves a livable amount), or keeping a tax refund, but clearing out a bank account is horrible. That will cause the person to bounce checks for things like rent, power, etc, and get overdraft fees.

Just Horrible. GRRRRR!
What idiot came up with this?
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#13 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 05:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Kiyomi View Post
No, it was a Stafford Student loan, the regular government ones. I can no longer get federal aid for the rest of my life. My mom is paying for school now.

This loan is from when I was much younger and stupider.
You can rehabilitate the loan and get access to federal aid again. (Like PP said) Just call the company that owns your student loan and ask about rehabilitation. If you don't know who owns your loans, I can show you how to find out. PM me. I would probably wait to do this until you have the bank account thing figured out though.

Don't know about the bank account. Did the bank tell you it was because of the student loan or are you guessing?
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#14 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 06:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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[QUOTE=mum4boys;10792808]Depending on the state you live in most states requires a process server to serve you with the summons and complaint. Even if they can mail it most require more then just mail but some kind of proof that you got it.
This happens all the time you are in and it is illegal. Call your bank and get a copy of the order they used to get the judgment to go after your bank account. Go to the courthouse give them the cause number on the order and in the court file they will have to prove they had you served. Then tell the court clerk you need to file a motion to vacate for lack of proper service. She/He will direct you the paperwork. You should be able to do this immediately in Ex Parte which means only one party is heard. You will need to explain in your motion that you were never served with the summons and complaint. More then likely you will be granted the motion to vacate. QUOTE]

I think this is a great idea, except that the judgement was passed in NY, and I now live in PA. So I would have to find child care, drive for 3 hrs, and hope I could work this all out.

I'm updating what was said in the call at the bottom.

Thanks for your sage advice.

~Kiyomi~ Unschooling mom to one very chatty, very amazing 7 year old bundle of boy
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#15 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 06:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, it's not my student loan...but I'm really excited about being able to eventually get out of default. If only I could come up with $50 a month. Seems like so little but everything is so tight.

I just got off the phone with the agency. It's a $2500 debt from the 1990s. They say I can settle for 80%, or $1996. But...is there a statute of limitations for credit card debt? It transpired in NY but I now live in PA.

They sent a server to my parents' house and they say they have a signature from a nonexistent family member, "Jane M...." I am wondering if this forged signature of a person that doesn't exist will invalidate their hold on my acct.

I am beyond stressed but at least it's a debt that could be paid off in a few years, as opposed to my student loan debt, which will take the rest of my life.

I tried to argue that since I nenver received a summons that there seizure is invalid. She said I have received a default judgement, to which I responded that of course I got a default judgement when I didn't even know there was a court date. She said that I am mistaken and the judgement holds. She also said this judgement came YEARS ago (2 -- 7 years?).

What can I do at this point? How does one argue about a false signature in this situation? I would be happy to work out payment arrangements with them, but I'd really like my $400 back.

Any help would be much appreciated. I've been so horribly stressed that I can neither eat nor sleep, can't stop shaking, and am having pains in my chest.

Thanks for the support, folks. It helps a lot.

~Kiyomi~ Unschooling mom to one very chatty, very amazing 7 year old bundle of boy
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#16 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 06:40 PM
 
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Well, it's not my student loan...but I'm really excited about being able to eventually get out of default. If only I could come up with $50 a month. Seems like so little but everything is so tight.

I just got off the phone with the agency. It's a $2500 debt from the 1990s. They say I can settle for 80%, or $1996. But...is there a statute of limitations for credit card debt? It transpired in NY but I now live in PA.

They sent a server to my parents' house and they say they have a signature from a nonexistent family member, "Jane M...." I am wondering if this forged signature of a person that doesn't exist will invalidate their hold on my acct.

I am beyond stressed but at least it's a debt that could be paid off in a few years, as opposed to my student loan debt, which will take the rest of my life.

I tried to argue that since I nenver received a summons that there seizure is invalid. She said I have received a default judgement, to which I responded that of course I got a default judgement when I didn't even know there was a court date. She said that I am mistaken and the judgement holds. She also said this judgement came YEARS ago (2 -- 7 years?).

What can I do at this point? How does one argue about a false signature in this situation? I would be happy to work out payment arrangements with them, but I'd really like my $400 back.

Any help would be much appreciated. I've been so horribly stressed that I can neither eat nor sleep, can't stop shaking, and am having pains in my chest.

Thanks for the support, folks. It helps a lot.
I don't know all the details, and I'm definitely not a lawyer, but something seems very fishy here.

There may be problem with 'tolling'. When you move out of state, the statute of limitations may be on hold.

I would get copies of everything relating to this judgement. Contact the court that issued it. A fake name signed for it??? - that is just insane.

You need exact records & dates. Exactly when the date of last deliquency for this account was, the exact date when they say they served 'Jane M', and the date of the judgement.

Per this site: http://whychat.5u.com/States/states.html

NY SOL is 6 yrs. So if you moved out of state 6 yrs or later after the date of last deliquency, they were out of SOL. If this was from the 90's, it may very well be.

Stop talking to them on the phone. They are screwing you over and acting like they would do you a favor to let you settle. Don't put any more money in your bank account, and send them a limited cease & desist letter stating they can only contact you by mail pursuant to the FDCPA. They obtained this judgement and bank seizure by less than ethical means. Do you parents even remember someone showing up at their house with this summons?

For now, I would just gather up all the paperwork. You will probably not get this money back any time soon, but you may be able to.

It totally sucks that Collection Agencies pull this type of garbage on someone who doesn't have alot of money, and therefore can't hire an attorney to stand up for their rights, and they know it. Once you get all the paperwork showing that 'Jane M' was served with the papers, you may be able to either get some help from legal aid, or find an attorney who would work on contingency. They may very well be owing YOU some money, not the other way around for their violations in collecting this debt.
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#17 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 07:14 PM
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ITA with zersha. In fact, I am furious on your behalf.

First, stop talking to them. Tell them they can only contact you by letter. Don't agree to anything, including owing the debt. Second, I would contact a lawyer. Call the legal aid services at your school if there is one. I bet they are outside the statute of limitations and I would also bet they forged the signature on the summons.

I would also contact the Attorney General's office and the FTC (that is who you complain to about collection agencies). Do you really think your parents would forget you being served at their house?

You might also visit creditboards.com. The people there were helpful to me when I had a bogus collection from a phone company for service 6 months after I moved out of state.
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#18 of 19 Old 03-18-2008, 07:17 PM
 
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[QUOTE=Kiyomi;10797695]
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Originally Posted by mum4boys View Post
Depending on the state you live in most states requires a process server to serve you with the summons and complaint. Even if they can mail it most require more then just mail but some kind of proof that you got it.
This happens all the time you are in and it is illegal. Call your bank and get a copy of the order they used to get the judgment to go after your bank account. Go to the courthouse give them the cause number on the order and in the court file they will have to prove they had you served. Then tell the court clerk you need to file a motion to vacate for lack of proper service. She/He will direct you the paperwork. You should be able to do this immediately in Ex Parte which means only one party is heard. You will need to explain in your motion that you were never served with the summons and complaint. More then likely you will be granted the motion to vacate. QUOTE]

I think this is a great idea, except that the judgement was passed in NY, and I now live in PA. So I would have to find child care, drive for 3 hrs, and hope I could work this all out.

I'm updating what was said in the call at the bottom.

Thanks for your sage advice.
Call up the courthouse and talk to the court clerk and find out what has been filed and entered. Tell them you are 3 hours away and see if they can fax it or mail it too you.

Heidi
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#19 of 19 Old 03-20-2008, 03:38 PM
 
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Don't let fear paralyze you!


Don't let them get away with it!




And now would be a good time to deal with the defaulted loans before it happens again!


Resistance is futile Matey
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