Have you received a summons stating a credit card company, landlord, or another party has filed a civil lawsuit against you as a collection effort? The experienced bankruptcy attorneys at The Law Office of Ronald D. Weiss, P.C. in Long Island can advise you of your options.
Receiving a summons to go to court is always stressful, and lawsuits often cost money to defend. For these reasons, too many people simply fail to show up to their court date, which results in a default judgment against them. Even if you defend your case in court, the case could still result in a judgment against you if the creditor prevails. Such judgments may then lead to wage garnishments, liens, and other court-approved attempts to collect the debt. If you are struggling financially and have received a summons, you should explore your options with an attorney as soon as possible.
How bankruptcy can help
When you file for personal bankruptcy, a court order known as an “automatic stay” immediately takes effect under 11 U.S. Code § 362 of the United States Bankruptcy Code. The automatic stay prohibits any further collection activities from creditors during your bankruptcy process. The stay also halts any pending civil litigation by creditors and prevents any additional creditors from filing new civil lawsuits against you. The court takes violations of the automatic stay very seriously. If a creditor is notified of your bankruptcy filing and willfully continues litigation activity against you, they may face sanctions by the bankruptcy court.
If your bankruptcy is approved, the underlying debt that incited the civil lawsuit will likely be included in your bankruptcy plan. Therefore, once that debt is discharged by the bankruptcy court, the creditor will no longer have a reason to file any more lawsuits against you regarding that debt. In this way, filing bankruptcy in a timely fashion can help you avoid the costly defense of a civil lawsuit the stress of facing a creditor in court. It may also protect you from judgments, liens, garnishments, and more that will only make your financial situation more tenuous.
If you have received a summons for a civil lawsuit, do not hesitate to contact our office at 631-271-3737 to discuss your options today.