What can I do about a debt collector wanting me to pay4 or5 times the amount of the original debt?

UPDATED: Jan 5, 2012

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

What can I do about a debt collector wanting me to pay4 or5 times the amount of the original debt?

I had a debt for a car I couldn’t finish paying for when I lost my job 8 years ago and I contacted the credit union a year later to settle it but I was told the debt was charged off as a lost. The debt was $3600 and I hadn’t heard from them anymore. Now I have a collector contacting me wanting me to pay over $12,000 for that same debt. Is this legal? I asked her why didn’t they contact me when I originally called the company and she told me that a lot of paperwork got messed up after hurricane Katrina. The debt was originated in LA. What can I do about this matter?

Asked on January 5, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Texas


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

First, is the debt a claim or an actual judgment? If the debt is simply a claim, then perhaps the debt would be time barred by the applicable statute of limitations in your state if a lawsuit was filed.

I suspect that the substantial increase on the $3,600 amount is due to accrued interest on the principal and late fees.

I suggest that you consult with an attorney that practices in the area of consumer matters to see if the claim against you is simply a claim and not a judgment. If only a claim, you might be exempt from having to pay it because of the applicable statute of limitations.

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 AttorneyPages.com 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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption