Can Credit Card companies take money out of my bank account without my permission?
When you stop paying a credit card, the first step in the collection process is for the credit card company to call you and send you collection letters. These calls and letters get increasingly aggressive and nasty as time goes by. They may even tell you that you can be arrested for not paying your credit card debt. This is not true and it violates the law for them to say it as a scare tactic. There are several law firms in the State of Connecticut that represent the credit card industry. These law firms file suit against delinquent credit card holders. If calling and writing letters does not scare you into paying, the credit card company will file a lawsuit against you. You will be served a summons from a marshal. You can try to defend the suit, but if you owe the money, the chances of winning the suit are low. If the credit card company wins the lawsuit, they will obtain a judgment against you. The judgment is very powerful because it allows the credit card company to take money from you without your permission. The court will give the credit card company a bank execution. A bank execution allows a state marshal to go to all of the banks in the state and if you have any money in those banks, the marshal can freeze that money. If you receive notice of a bank execution it is not too late to protect the money in the bank. The bank will give you a form, which allows you to claim the money in the bank account as exempt. The form is called Exemption Claim Form Bank Execution. It can be found on the Connecticut Judicial website as form JD-CV24a. A creditor cannot take your last $1000, so if you have $1000 or less in the account, you can protect it. If the money in the account comes from Social Security, that is exempt as well. You only have 15 days from the mailing of the Exemption Claim Form to claim the money in the account as exempt. You should also file the form with your bank. After you file the form with the court, you will receive a hearing date.
If you file bankruptcy during this 15 day window, the credit card company will not be able to take the money from your account.
In most cases you can protect up to $10,000-$12,000 per person in your bank account if you file a Chapter 7 bankruptcy.
If you receive a bank execution, Attorney Pletter can help you fill out the Exemption Claim Form.
He can also tell you if filing for bankruptcy is a good idea.