We have written a few articles on when you should hire an attorney in the legal process.  However, earlier this week, we were reminded of the importance of hiring an attorney from the beginning.

We were contacted by a potential client recently about a collection case with a debt buyer who specializes in buying old vehicle loans.  The potential client was very confused about who was suing him and why.  He remembered some events from a few years ago when another company sent him letters about an old car loan, but didn’t think he was actually being sued.  Finally, he sent us a document he was referencing.  It turned out to be a Court Order for a case that was 2 years old.  This peaked our curiosity, so we contacted the Court for more information.  The Court told us where the case was in the process and that a hearing was scheduled for next week.  Shocked by this news, we decided to postpone the pending hearing by contacting the opposing counsel for consent.  Continuing the odd discoveries in this case, opposing counsel then sent us a Consent Judgment signed by our potential client from 2 years ago.  From there, we started to get a full picture of what happened.

Two years ago, our potential client was sued by the debt collection company.  Instead of calling an attorney, the potential client called the debt collector to work out a deal.  The potential client ended up agreeing to repay $15,000.00 through monthly payments.  When the potential client didn’t make those payments, the debt collector decided to continue the Court case, and here we are.

The big problem from our prospective is that it is too late to really help this potential client.  There is already a judgment against him for $15,000.00.  If he had contacted us 2 years ago, we might have been able to successfully defend him for a fraction of the cost and he wouldn’t have owed the debt collector a dime.  However, because he is coming to us too late in the game, there is little we can do.  If you are in a similar situation, don’t wait to contract an attorney.  Waiting will only make matters worse.