LawyersKey - Lawyers Key » Lawyers List » Criminal Lawyer » How long will I be in jail for owing debt collectors?

  #1 (permalink)
: I have court on June 12th in the state of virginia. I owe less than $6000 for a car repossession last year. I tried asking but no one will let me borrow money. I tried applying for a loan at several agencies nothing! My credit from last year went from 300 to 570. I even made an account on no takers. Seeing I don't make enough how long will I stay in jail? I have a dog and mother that rely on me 100%.

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  #2 (permalink)
: you don't go to jail for debts you haven't paid.
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  #3 (permalink)
: You cannot go to jail for debt. You can go to jail for failure to pay fines or restitution as part of a court order in relation to a criminal offense.

If you are being sued in civil court for a debt, there is no possibility of being sentenced to jail.
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  #4 (permalink)
: Generally speaking, you don't get jailed for debt unless it was obtained fraudulently -- such as if you go sign up for credit cards knowing darn well you'll never pay them.

Those you owe money to can get a court judgment that says you officially owe it. They can then take money above a minimum level from your paychecks, bank accounts, etc. If you have expensive assets (like a nice stereo) they can force their sale to pay them back.

But they don't put you in jail for debt. If you get in over your head with it, many debts can be discharged in bankruptcy. But that ruins your credit, and you can't do it again for several years... during which time you could get hit with even worse debts like medical expenses.

(And you're not going to get appointed a lawyer for this, so don't expect one. They just need to know if you're disputing the debt for any reason. And then they're going to need to get into detail with your income, etc., and how they can collect it.)
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  #5 (permalink)
: You will not be jailed for a car repossession

That is a civil matter not criminal

Go to court and let them know you can not afford a lawyer they will provide one

Let the judge know you take care of your mother with a pet and currently your having a rough time

Be polite and dress nice
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  #6 (permalink)
: Ditch your mother. She ought to be supporting herself. Time in jail depends on what you did. If you knowingly bought a car you could not afford and tried to get away with not paying, you could be slapped with whatever jail sentence a judge sees fit, along with charges. If you could afford it and then you lost your job and suddenly, then could not afford it and you willingly allowed the repossession, and if that is all you owe and you did not commit any crimes, then you will not go to jail.
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