“If I’m sued by a debt collector in the wrong county, what should I do?”
What could possibly be worse?
A debt collector suing you in the wrong county.
That’s why it is against the law.
What can you do in the state court collection case?
You can ask the judge to transfer your case to the right county, if you were sued in the wrong one.
In Small Claims, you’ll receive a “form answer” to file.
When you file your answer, box “A” is where you have been sued in the wrong county.
That’s the box you will want to check.
In District court, you can file a motion to change the venue.
What can you do in federal court with the collector who sued you in the wrong county?
If the debt collector (debt buyer) who sued you is subject to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), then it can only sue you in one of two counties:
- Where you currently live
- Where you signed the contract or entered into the loan
Anywhere else is a violation of the FDCPA.
Some people file these suits immediately.
We prefer to wait till after we win the collection case and then sue the debt collector in federal court.
We sue for making false representations, unfair conduct, etc. as well as malicious prosecution.
In addition, we add the claim that the lawsuit was filed in the wrong county.
You can see an example below where we sued Midland Funding in federal court for this violation. We have only included the specific part on the wrong county.
What should you do now?
Decide whether you are going to handle this on your own, or if you’re going to hire a lawyer.
To find out more about these options, then you may want to check out our 5 options for when you are sued — it is an article and a 24 minute video.
If you want to chat with us, call us at 205-879-2447 or let us know on our contact page and we’ll get right back with you.
Thanks for reading, and have a great day!
============== EXAMPLE LANGUAGE FROM LAWSUIT===========
- On August 2, 2013, Defendant Midland sued Plaintiff in the Small Claims Court of Jefferson County, Alabama.
- The lawsuit was improperly filed in Jefferson County as the FDCPA required the suit be brought in Shelby County, where Plaintiff lived, and where the debt was allegedly created by Plaintiff signing a contract in Shelby County, Alabama.
15 U.S.C. § 1692i(a)(2)
- Plaintiff incorporates by reference all of the above paragraphs of this Complaint as though fully stated herein.
- Section 1692i(a)(2) states:
- (a) Any debt collector who brings any legal action on a debt against any consumer shall —
- (2) in the case of an action not described in paragraph (1), bring such action only in the judicial district or similar legal entity —
- (A) in which such consumer signed the contract sued upon; or
- (B) in which such consumer resides at the commencement of the action.
- Specifically, paragraphs 47-48 support the 1692i(a)(2) claim.
- As a result of Defendant Midland’s violations of the FDCPA, Plaintiff is entitled to actual damages; statutory damages; and reasonable attorney’s fees, expenses and costs from Defendant Midland.