How do you answer a summons from a collection agency?


Quick Answer

If served with a debt collection summons and complaint, compile a short statement, which is called an answer, that addresses each of the allegations outlined in the summons and complaint, as attorney Robert J. Nahoum details. The response filed outlines whether you admit, deny or lack knowledge of the allegations presented to you.

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Full Answer

When formulating a response, include defenses and counterclaims, as attorney Nahoum explains. An affirmative defense presents evidence as to why you should win the case. Some common defenses to a debt collection lawsuit include the defendant not being served properly, which is called a lack of personal jurisdiction, or that the statute of limitations has expired, which means that the debt is too old for collection. If you have settled or paid the debt, you would use an accord and satisfaction defense.

If the plaintiff acted improperly or imposed interest that exceeds the legal limit, argue for the outright dismissal of the case. For example, the state of Texas prohibits collection agencies from using fraudulent or abusive tactics to obtain payments, as the Office of the Attorney General of Texas indicates. If a debt collector violates the Texas Debt Collection Act, it may help defendants in Texas debt collection cases.

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