WAIT!!! Before you make that first collections payment read this article!
In our "Financial Advice of the Month" series, Mike Johnson shares his expertise regarding debts in collections and their statues of limitations.
You’ve decided to begin adulting, great! Don’t spend more of your hard-earned money than you need to. As of this article the statute of limitations in the state of Texas is set to 4 years. This means if you have debt in collections that is over four years old since your last payment, you are not legally bound to pay this back. Review your credit report in order to view the date of your last payment or to check on your collection status. One time per year you can view your credit report for free by going to www.annualcreditreport.com.
Debt outside the statute of limitations point is called “time-barred”. After this time period a debtor can still take you to court and the court can award a judgement to the debtor if you aren’t present. If you’re notified about a court date with a debtor, you’re still responsible for attending. Simply let the judge know the debt is outside of the statute of limitations law. Be ready with your proof: the date of last payment and the date debt passed the limitation at a minimum. If you make a payment on any debt in collections you will restart the clock on the statute of limitations law!
New to Texas? If the debt was accumulated in a different state, you must read the fine print on your debt to ensure which state the law falls under. This varies by state and you will need to do your research.
Pull your credit reports at least annually to stay informed with your credit report and to ensure the items mentioned are accurate to you. Our next article will cover tips to prevent identity theft! Schedule a consultation: 210-446-5724. My team is ready to assist and I’m happy to help people at every income level.