27 Aug A Creditor Is Threatening To Put Me In Jail For Not Paying My Debt
In North Carolina, you can’t go to jail for simply not paying a debt under most circumstances. You can be jailed for passing a bad check or for contempt of court. You can go to jail for failure to pay child support or taxes. However, not paying an ordinary debt is not sufficient for an automatic go to jail ticket. You have to have violated a criminal statue in order to be subject to criminal prosecution. If you are threatened with jail by a creditor, they may be violating the unfair debt collection laws and you may be able to sue them for doing so.
If a creditor or collection agency threatens you with jail time, they are probably trying to scare you and they are breaking the law. Creditors can’t threaten you with what they can’t do.
Sometimes creditor say they are going to send the Sheriff out to you. In North Carolina, Sheriffs deliver a majority of lawsuits. They are normally polite and just interested in completing their task, which is to hand you the documents so they can sign off in the Court file to prove you received the papers. Then the Sheriff leaves, without you. They are not there to pick you up and take you to jail, though many creditors want you to believe that they are.
If you are threatened with criminal prosecution for an ordinary debt like a loan or credit card, call a lawyer to see what rights you have. If you have received a lawsuit, you need to speak to a lawyer to see how that will affect you. If this is just one of a number of debts you have that you can’t repay, Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy may also be an option to consider putting a permanent end to further harassment or collection activities.
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