Auburn, AL asked in Civil Litigation, Consumer Law and Contracts for Alabama

Q: What does it mean when a creditor leaves you a message that the account is pending litigation?

I recently found out that several accounts (signature loans, credit cards) have not been paid by my (now ex) finance. Bankruptcy appears to be my only option. However, I am having to come up with the money to pay an atty.

Is litigation the same as a lawsuit? Can this turn into a garnishment? Will I be subpoenaed?

2 Lawyer Answers
P. Vaughan Russell Jr.
P. Vaughan Russell Jr.
Answered
  • Birmingham, AL
  • Licensed in Alabama

A: Yes, litigation is another term for a lawsuit. If collection actions have been filed against you, then you will have been served with paper legal documents: a Summons and Complaint, either by certified mail or process server/sheriff. This is required for any lawsuit to move forward. Telephone messages from alleged creditors do not mean that you have actually been sued by anyone for anything. You need to contact an attorney to determine whether any lawsuits have been filed against you in Alabama to collect one or more debts. You also need to determine whether you are actually responsible for payment of these debts, i.e., which of these list you as the debtor/account holder.

Garnishment of wages happens after a lawsuit has been filed and a Court determines that the money in dispute is owed by the garnishee. The Court then orders garnishment of wages. This does not happen without a lawsuit having first been initiated and resolved.

Tim Akpinar agrees with this answer

1 user found this answer helpful

Tim Akpinar
Tim Akpinar
Answered

A: I agree with Mr. Russell. Pending litigation means your account could be the subject of a collection lawsuit. If you suspect that bankruptcy is a likely option, you should consider consulting with a bankruptcy attorney. You mention difficult finances. You would be able to discuss terms with a bankruptcy attorney, but if served with papers for a lawsuit, the urgency with which to respond would present greater pressure. Good luck

Tim Akpinar

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