In today’s troubled economy, people are finding themselves accumulating more credit card debt than ever before. Unfortunately, more of those same people are not able to make payments towards their outstanding balances. This leads to the question: Can a credit card company sue you? To be blunt, yes they can. While it doesn’t seem fair for them to sue you for a few thousand dollars when they have billions, the law gives them the right to sue you. You may not realize it, but when you signed up for your card, you entered into a legally binding contract. That means if you go long enough without paying, not only can credit card companies sue you, there is a good chance that they will.
The card companies generate the most money from the people they can keep paying for years and years. The profits come from the interest they charge (as well as late fees and other charges), and the longer you make payments, the more interest they collect.
The question isn’t really can a credit card company sue you, but rather why wouldn’t they. After all, when you quit paying they lose a portion of their income. If they let too many people get a way with it, then they start getting into financial trouble themselves. Regardless, the contract you signed has provisions for how payments are made, and breaking a contract is one of the most common reasons for being sued.
Therefore, it makes sense to do whatever you can to prevent being sued in the first place. If you know you won’t be able to keep up on your payments, or have already fallen way behind, you should contact the credit card company right away. Be honest with them and explain your situation. You may be surprised at how flexible they are and the arrangements they can make to help you.
It is always easier to deal directly with the card company, but if you are close to being sued, then there is a good chance that they have handed over your account to a collection agency. If you find you are now dealing with an agency, then send a written proposal to them for paying what you owe.
Sometimes they will give you a much lower pay off amount. This is where they reduce the total you owe (sometimes by as much as 50%), but there is a catch: you will have a short time in which to pay this amount, and you usually have to pay the total in one, two or three large payments. However, if there is any way you can do it, it’s a good way to reduce the total amount that comes out of your pocket.
Finally, not only can a credit card company sue you, but if the court finds in favor of the card company (which they most likely will in all but the most extenuating of circumstances) you will have the added expense of court costs. That being said, you should also know that having a judgment against you isn’t the end of the world, though it will be a serious mark against you for many years to come.