I used to live in the USA and have been back in UK for several years. I had a balance on one of my USA credit cards for approx $3500. I have been unable to find work here in UK and am living on benefits. The current economic climate is not picking up and I am looking at re-training. I am at my whits end in regards to my situation.
I have just received a lettee from a company in teh USA called Bonded Collection.
They are advising they agree to accept a payment of $3546.85 from me and that this will satisfy all monies due. then it goes on to say ” if the remaining balance on the account after settlement is equal or exceed $600 the IRS requires bonded Collection corporation to repost the amount of forgiveness on a 1099-C from. BCC makes no representation about tax consequences this may have or any reporting requirements that may be imposed on it. You should contact an independent Tax counsel of your own choosing if you desire advice about any tax consequences which may result from this settlement.”
I would love to be able to settle but cannot. I left the USA in 2008 and have not worked in over 3 years now. I simply do not have any way to settle this. Wil they come after me with a court order here in UK ? I have no intention fo returning to USA. They are sending letters to my old address here which are being forwarded to me by my family.
Can you offer any advice on what I should do and if you think I am going to find myself in a USA court case.
You help and advice is much appreciated as I am feeling VERY desperate.
I can understand your concerns, however I cannot really say as to if this collection company will or will not begin any legal proceedings against you and take you to court. If they were to do this, obviously you could not attend unless you went back to the states. Also, if they were to obtain a judgment against you, do you have any assets in the states?
Also, do you have any other debts in the USA?
Any debts in the UK?
The issue of settling the debt is moot, as you do not have the funds to do so. What the collection company is referring to in the letter is that if they settle the debt for less than what is owed, you may have a tax liability as the amount written off can be taxed. This can be complicated depending on a person’s tax circumstance, the amount written off, etc, and again in your situation doesn’t really pertain.
Regarding the collection firm in the USA trying to collect the debt from you in the UK, there is little they can do as the countries have very different laws regarding the collection of debts and the fact they are two different countries. The only concern would be if the debt is sold to a collection firm in the UK, they could then collect the debt in accord with the laws and rules here in the UK. However if this were to occur, you do have options, more options than if you were in the USA. So we can deal with that issue, if and when the time comes.
So bottom line, if you cannot afford to pay or settle the debt, then there is little you can do. And unless you have assets in America, and the collection firm seeks out a judgment and looks to enforce it, there is little they can do to collect the debt from you in the UK, unless they sell the debt onto a collection company in the UK.
I hope this helps.
Jon Emge is an experienced UK debt advisor who has helped thousands and thousands of people in the UK to deal with problem debt. Jon specialises in finding good solutions for problem debt using a variety of UK specific techniques.
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