Can a judgement be filed against me if I answer the summons admitting the debt and if I make payment arrangements?

UPDATED: Sep 6, 2011

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Can a judgement be filed against me if I answer the summons admitting the debt and if I make payment arrangements?

I am being sued by a law firm on behalf of the original creditor. I have not answered the summons yet, but have called and made a monthly payment arrangement with the firm. They want me to sign a document saying that I admit to the debt in the form of a judgement. I said I do not want to sign that document and they said they will not accept any payment without signature of that document. I would prefer not to settle the debt but instead pay it all off at my convenience, and I would prefer to do so outside of court. What would be the best way to answer the summons?

Asked on September 6, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Massachusetts


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

If you do not answer the summons and complaint served upon you in this matter in a timely fashion, you run the risk of a default and default judgment judgment against you concerning the claims against you. I understand that you want to make your monthly arrangement to pay down the debt but do not want to sign a form of a judgment.

The problem is that the law firm may have some statute of limitations issues if the action filed is dismissed and you do not continue making your agreement to make the minthly payments.

If you have a default entered against you in your matter, the result will be a default judgment where the plaintiff can try and levy upon your bank accounts for payments.

You could consider a stipulation for entry of judgment where the judgment will not be entered against you if you stay current on your monthly payments.

Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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