No one enjoys being sued by debt collectors. Still, this article will try to make responding to the lawsuit a little easier. We’ll show you how to answer a summons for debt collection in Oregon. By following our advice, you can hopefully avoid some of the stress and anxiety that comes with being sued.
Don’t worry; you can win your debt collection lawsuit. This article will review key points that will help you respond to your debt collection lawsuit in Oregon. This includes things like deadlines, filing fees, and the necessary forms. So let’s get started!
Oregon deadline to Answer a debt collection summons
You must respond to a debt collection lawsuit within the timeframe set by your state or risk losing by default. This means that the person or company suing you can request a default judgment against you, allowing them to garnish your wages and seize your property to get the debt paid back.
Don’t let this happen to you. You could be facing a debt collection lawsuit. Respond to the case before the Oregon deadline to avoid any negative consequences.
Oregon Rules of Civil Procedure Rule 7 C(2) states:
“Time for response. If the Summons is served by any manner other than publication, the defendant shall appear and defend within 30 days from the date of service. If the Summons is served by publication pursuant to subparagraph D(6)(a)(i) of this rule, the defendant shall appear and defend within 30 days from the date stated in the Summons. The date so stated in the Summons shall be the date of the first publication.”
You have a limited time to respond to a debt collection lawsuit in Oregon. The amount of time you have depends on the type of case. Small Claims cases give you 14 days to respond, while other cases generally give you 30 days.
Fill out an Oregon Answer to Summons form
You must respond to the debt collection lawsuit by creating an Answer document. This document should address the Summons and Complaint you received.
The state of Oregon has several helpful forms available for residents.
- Oregon Small Claims court response form
- Oregon response form
- Consumer complaint form
You can respond to a debt collection lawsuit by filling out one of the forms provided by Oregon Courts. These forms can be found on the Oregon Courts website.
Answer filing fees are charged by Oregon courts
In the state of Oregon, you must pay a filing fee to file your Answer with the court. Many see this as unfair, as you are being sued for a debt and have to pay a fee just to respond, even if you don’t owe the debt.
The fees for the Oregon Judicial Department break down as follows:
Small Claims fees:
- $57 fee for cases involving less than $2,500
- $102 fee for cases involves $2,500-$10,000
Regular Civil fees
- $170 fee for cases involving less than $10,000
- $283 fee for cases involving $10,000-$50,000
- $594 fee for cases involves $50,000-$1M
Although it may not seem like it, filing fees in the state of Oregon are some of the country’s highest. This can be frustrating for residents who need to use the court system for one reason or another. Let’s consider an example to understand how Answer filing fees apply.
Example: Tim is sued for $1,000 in small claims court in Oregon. Since the amount in controversy is less than $2,500, Tim must pay the $57 filing fee. If Tim was being sued for the same amount, but the case was filed in the circuit court, he would have to pay $170 to file his Answer.
You may get a fee waiver for court costs in Oregon. This means you would not have to pay the fees associated with filing a case. To see if you qualify, fill out the Oregon courts fee waiver application. You will need to provide information about your income and expenses and why paying the fees would cause a financial burden.
To respond to a debt collection case in Oregon, follow these steps
The process of filing suit against someone begins when you are served with the Summons and Complaint. The Summons provides notice of the case to you, while the Complaint outlines the specific claims being made against you. Once you have received these documents, you have limited time to respond; failing so may result in an automatic loss of your case.
Creating an Answer document is the best way to respond to a Summons and Complaint in Oregon. This document will allow you to dispute the debt being claimed against you and present any evidence or arguments you have in your defense. There are three steps to responding to a debt collection lawsuit.
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- Respond to each allegation listed in the Complaint.
- Make Affirmative Defenses.
- The Answer Should Be Filed With The Court And Served On The Plaintiff.
1. Respond to each allegation in the complaint
You have to respond to every paragraph of the Complaint. This lawsuit against you includes several numbered sections detailing what you owe and why you are being sued. You must read each section carefully and decide how you want to respond to defend yourself. Depending on the case, there may be between 10 and 30 numbered paragraphs. You can only react in three ways:
- Admit: Admit the claim if you agree with everything in the paragraph.
- Deny: Deny the claim if you disagree with anything in the paragraph.
- Deny due to lack of knowledge: This is a lawyerly way of saying, “I don’t know.” Choose this option if you don’t understand the claim or don’t have the information needed to respond to it.
Many attorneys recommend making a general denial, where you deny everything in the Complaint and force the other side to prove everything. This is a good strategy in many cases.
However, there are also some situations where it may be better to deny specific allegations in the Complaint.
2. Make affirmative defenses
You’re almost ready to assert your affirmative defenses. But first, you need to respond to each claim.
There are many reasons why the person suing you may not have a case. These are called affirmative defenses; you must list them in your Answer to raise them later. By doing so, you can defend yourself against the lawsuit.
According to Oregon Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 19(B) states:
“Affirmative defenses. In pleading to a preceding pleading, a party shall set forth affirmatively: accord and satisfaction; arbitration and award; assumption of risk; claim preclusion; comparative or contributory negligence; discharge in bankruptcy; duress; estoppel; failure of consideration; fraud; illegality; injury by fellow servant; issue preclusion; laches; license; payment; release; statute of frauds; statute of limitations; unconstitutionality; waiver; and any other matter constituting an avoidance or affirmative defense.
Many defenses can be used in debt collection cases. Some of the more common ones are listed below.
- The account with the debt is not your account.
- The contract was already canceled. Therefore you don’t owe the creditor anything.
- In Oregon, a law sets a deadline for taking legal action. This law is called a statute of limitations. Once this statute expires, you can no longer take any legal action.
- The debt has been paid or excused.
- The debt has been partially paid.
- You were a co-signer but were not informed of your rights as a co-signer.
These are a few of the many affirmative defenses. Failing to pay a debt is not usually a legal justification for the debt.
2. The Answer should be filed with the court and served on the plaintiff
It is essential to respond to the paragraphs in the Complaint and assert your affirmative defenses before moving on to the final step: filing your Answer. By doing so, you will be prepared and ready to take action.
Oregon’s statewide court e-filing system can help speed up the filing process. By filing your Answer electronically, you can save time and move your case faster.
If you prefer to mail your Answer in, here’s what you need to do to file your Answer.
- Print two copies of your Answer.
- Mail one copy to the court.
- Mail the other copy to the plaintiff’s attorney.
Once you complete this final step, you have successfully responded to your debt lawsuit.
Statute of Limitations on Debt in Oregon
Once a debt collector or creditor has passed a certain amount of time, they can no longer sue someone for a debt they owe. This is known as a statute of limitations. So, even though you may still technically owe money after this period has expired, you cannot be taken to court.
According to Oregon’s Procedure in Civil Proceedings, §12.080 states:
“Action on certain contracts or liabilities. (1) An action upon a contract or liability, express or implied, excepting those mentioned in ORS 12.070, 12.110 and 12.135 and except as otherwise provided in ORS 72.7250;
(2) An action upon a liability created by statute, other than a penalty or forfeiture, excepting those mentioned in ORS 12.110;
(3) An action for waste or trespass upon or for interference with or injury to any interest of another in real property, excepting those mentioned in ORS 12.050, 12.060, 12.135, 12.137 and 273.241; or
(4) An action for taking, detaining, or injuring personal property, including an action for the specific recovery thereof, excepting an action mentioned in ORS 12.137, shall be commenced within six years.”
The statute of limitations on debt in Oregon is typically six years. However, some types of debts have other restrictions. For example, you may still be liable for certain debts even after six years.
Creditors will sometimes try to sue debtors even after the statute of limitations has expired. However, debtors can use the statute of limitations as an affirmative defense to avoid being held responsible for the debt. It is important to remember that simply mentioning the statute of limitations is not enough – debtors must take active steps to defend themselves in court.
You should always be aware of the statute of limitations on your debts, as making even a single payment on an old debt can restart the clock and leave you open to being taken to court. Always check the last activity date on your debt accounts and familiarize yourself with the laws in your state before agreeing to any payment plans.
Oregon Legal Aid Organizations
Many government-funded organizations provide free legal services to people across the United States. In Oregon, there are a few of these organizations that anyone in need can access.
Legal Aid Services of Oregon
520 SW Sixth Avenue, Ste 1130
Portland, OR 97204
Oregon Law Help
Public Benefits Hotline
Here are some key takeaways
Here’s the review on how to answer a Summons for debt collection in Oregon.
- You have 30 days to respond to a debt collection lawsuit in Oregon. If your case is in Oregon Small Claims court, you have 14 days to respond.
- Oregon circuit courts charge a fee to file your Answer: $170 for cases with less than $10,000 in question, $283 for cases between $10,000 and $50,000, and $594 for cases with more than $50,000 in question.
- You must respond with a written Answer document in which you reply to each claim listed in the Complaint and assert your affirmative defenses.
- File your Answer in the court and send a copy to the plaintiff’s attorney.
- The statute of limitations on debt in Oregon is __ years.
Best of luck in your court case! This guide should help provide some tips and advice.
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