A recent news story has been shared more than ten thousand times and has created a panic for some people who are in debt. The story supposedly shows that a person was arrested for being in debt. Now people wonder: Can you be arrested for having debt? The short answer is no. The longer answer may be a little more complicated.
What the Story Got Right and What it Go Wrong
According to the story, which was created by Fox News, a man was arrested for unpaid student loans. This is false. The man did owe student loans and was required to show up in court to talk to a judge. He did not appear in court – which is a misdemeanor. As a result, he was arrested. This may seem like splitting hairs but not being arrested for debts is an important part of our justice code.
The truth is that if the man in question had gone to court, he would not have been arrested – even if he could not have paid the judgment rendered to him. The debt was not a factor in his arrest – it was all about the fact that he did not show up in court as required by law.
What Really Happens When There is a Judgment Against a Debtor
Yes, debtors can have judgments issued against them and there are real consequences – but those consequences are not jail. What actually happens is that the creditor files a lawsuit and gets a judgment in which the debtor is then required to pay it. The creditor can use that judgment to take legal action against the borrower, such as garnishing their wages or filing a lien against their property.
Learn How to Get a Creditor to Stop Their Actions Against You
In the event you find yourself dealing with debt, you may feel as though you are out of options. This is false. The fact of the matter is that there is a simple way to get your creditors to stop calling you: File for bankruptcy. State and federal law are clear that once you have filed bankruptcy, you get an automatic stay on any collection attempts against you.
Does this end the issue forever? No, but it does give you breathing room. It does allow you to talk to a bankruptcy attorney and find out what your options are. If you are drowning in debt and feeling helpless about your options, we strongly urge you to contact The Law Offices of Paul Y. Lee at 888-748-0025. We will carefully consider your options, offer our free case evaluation, and help you find the way out.