FORUM ABUSE – SUED IN THE WRONG COURT
In legal jargon, the term “venue” refers to the proper geographic location where a court can hear a case. State and federal venue laws govern where a case can be filed but usually include the county, town or city where the defendant (the party being sued) resides, where the defendant does business and where the plaintiff (the party doing the suing) does business. If the case involves a consumer credit transaction where a purchaser, borrower or debtor is the defendant, the case must be brought only in the area where the defendant resides or where the transaction took place.
When enacting federal debt collection laws called the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA for short), Congress intended to eliminate abusive debt collection practices by collection agencies and other debt collectors. Among the abusive practices that Congress intended the FDCPA to eliminate was the “problem of ‘forum abuse,’ an unfair practice in which debt collectors file suit against consumers in courts which are so distant or inconvenient that consumers are unable to appear,” thus allowing the debt collector to win a default judgment.
The FDCPA’s venue provisions require that consumer debt collection lawsuits be brought “only in the judicial district or similar legal entity in which [the] consumer resides at the commencement of the action” or where the “consumer signed the contract sued upon.”
The Law Offices of Robert J. Nahoum represents consumers who have been sued on a consumer credit transaction in a county, town, city or state other than where such consumers live. In appropriate case, we sue debt collectors and debt collection law firms in Federal District Court for violations of the FDCPA. Because the FDCPA is fee shifting (meaning that the debt collector pays our legal fees), we don’t charge our FDCPA clients a penny out of pocket.
If you have questions, concerns, or legal needs regarding debt collection forum abuse, we urge you to contact The Law Offices of Robert J. Nahoum, P.C. today by calling 845-232-0202.