Question: I stopped paying on a credit card. What is the statute of limitations within which the debt collector has to sue me?
Answer: It depends, as the typical lawyer would answer. Each state has its own statute of limitations. So, it depends on where you live. If you are in California, it is generally 4 years under most theories that the debt collectors use to sue you. However, it could be longer or shorter depending on your specific circumstances.
I found a great resource to use to check the statute of limitations in each state. This website will provide you the statute in all 50 states for debt collection cases.
If a debt collector calls you and you are sure its past the statute of limitations, you need to immediately send them a validation letter and a cease contact letter. (See my post from last week.) It may be a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and California’s Rosenthal Act for them to do this.
Of course, if you are unsure, you should consult with an attorney about your specific case.