We are constantly telling people not to allow a default judgment to be entered. This is where you get sued and do not answer the complaint. When this happens, the judge will normally declare the plaintiff (debt collector or debt buyer) to be the winner and a judgment will be entered against you.
This means several things. First, you owe the money regardless of whether you actually did owe the money. Since you defaulted, the court determined you owe the money. Second, you have a judgment on your credit report that will stay there for many years. Third, garnishment can happen.
Read this riveting post about garnishment in Minnesota where it apparently can happen even before a lawsuit:
A bank gets a garnishment summons, and locks down funds. Public assistance like Social Security Income is technically exempt from garnishment, but a debtor has to file exemption papers to get their money back. The bank takes the money, and the debtor has to fight to get it back.
That’s how the system works.
This rest of this post describes a frightening practice of debt collectors routinely taking exempt social security funds from the elderly. We recommend you read this and the other articles on the fine blog by Sam Glover entitled Caveat Emptor.
Another resource for you is to join our Facebook Fan Page – Alabama Consumer Protection Attorneys where we share useful information about the same types of issues that we cover in this blog.