Manteca, CA asked in Collections for California

Q: Should I file a response to a Civil Lawsuit

Me and my wife were served a summons for a unlimited civil case in California. This is for an outstanding hospital bill from October 2013. The insurance company issued a payment to my wife but only for a partial amount because she was taken to an out of network hospital. We signed over this check to the hospital and was told not to worry about the balance that they would either write it off or go after the insurance company themselves. We continued to receive statements from the hospital up until July of 2016 and since then never received any other correspondence. At this time I am currently receiving SSDI benefits and my wife is unemployed and has no source of income but has a pending SSDI claim. We have no assests, we do not own a home so basically have no source of income to pay off this settlement. We do have a hearing for Case management conference set but my question is do we need to file a response to this summons with the courts or should we just wait and attend the hearing?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Barak J Berlin
Barak J Berlin
  • Consumer Law Lawyer
  • Lake Elsinore, CA
  • Licensed in California

A: It sounds like you need to file an answer. You only have thirty days after being served to do so. You may have a defense based on the statute of limitations. You may also have a claim against the collection agency. You may be able to get a free consultation. Go to the National Association for Consumer Advocates website ( and use the "Find an Attorney" link.

Tim Akpinar agrees with this answer

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