We recently posted about the widespread problem of debt buyers suing Alabama consumers for cell phone bills more than two years after the bill was not paid. As we noted in the post, there is a two year statute of limitation that applies that debt buyers such as Palisades (AT&T Wireless) and other debt buyers ignore. These suits are often brought by law-firms such as Zarzaur & Schwartz (who represents Palisades in hundreds of cases brought every month in Alabama). A question we are often asked is whether there is anything that can be done when a default judgment has occurred. The answer is “Yes” – you can sue the debt buyer who brought the bogus suit – but the default judgment is often impossible to overcome.
As we discussed, the suit is a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) if it is brought after the statute of limitations has expired. Almost every suit over a cell phone bill we have seen is brought closer to five or six years, not two years. So the debt buyer has likely violated the FDCPA by bringing the suit.
But unfortunately the default judgment will often stand. There are certain time limits that apply to getting default judgments set aside. But even if you cannot set aside the default judgment, you can still often sue the debt buyer.
So, if you were sued over a cell phone bill and a default judgment was entered against you, you still have options. Please feel free to contact us for a free consultation. If you have just been sued, then you have even more options. We look forward to helping you any way we can.
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