When you made a bad debt and you can’t afford to pay your credit card bills, the period called “statute of limitations” will take effect. Statute of limitations generally refers to the period when credit collectors can sue you if you have failed to make a payment on a payment period. This starts from your last payment or from the date when you last purchased using the credit card. After the statute of limitations period has expired, credit collectors can’t have you tried in court, threaten you or demand for payments because their collection period has expired. Read on to figure out the statute of limitations for your credit card debt.
Different states have different statutes of limitations. In the United States, each state has a different statute of limitations. If you missed a payment, find out where you made that credit. Refer to your credit card statement to locate the state of your purchase. Once you have tracked your purchases, look up on the website creditcards.com to verify the statute of limitations. For example, in the state of Arizona, the collection period is for three years while in other states like Wyoming and Iowa have the longest periods of statute limitations which is 7 years.
Refer to your credit card contract. Since the statute of limitations starts from your last payment or your last purchase, check your credit card contract to find out what is your billing date. That date will be the basis of your SOL computations so keep records of your credit card bill.
Calculate for the statute of limitation period. To determine the date wherein your statute of limitation expires, start from the date you stopped paying your credit card bill. Next would be to determine which state you made your last purchase. Get the number of years of the statute of limitation period for that state and add years to your last payment made. Thus:
If your last payment was on July 15, 2005 and you made the purchase in Arizona (which has a SOL of 3 years), then your SOL period would be:
July 15, 2005 + 3 years = July 15, 2008
After July 15, 2008, you are no longer held responsible to pay for the remaining credit you owe and no creditor can sue you in court after this period.
Respond to court notices. After your SOL has expired and you still received court notices from your creditor, never disregard them. Chances are, the court will rule over your case and dismiss you because of the SOL expiry. Don’t underestimate credit card companies as well. If you responded by paying some amount to your previous balances, in some states, creditors have the power to reinstate your statute of limitations and the period will restart.
It is never a good practice to fail paying off your debts. You should avoid burrowing yourself in debt in the first place. Plan your purchases well and never buy anything that you know you can’t pay within the next month. Remember that there are interest rates and that amount can put you deeper into debt.