“But a 2008 report by MFY Legal Services, a nonprofit law firm in New York, found that defendants in consumer debt cases showed up in court less than 10 percent of the time, raising questions about whether they were ever properly served and about the prevalence of sewer service in the industry.”
Sewer Service is when a process server, (the person hired to give you court papers letting you know of a law suit) fakes the delivery notice and tosses your papers in the sewer. In New York there were several companies hired by Debt Collectors to serve notices of a law suit that were accused of forging signatures proving they delivered the court papers. The result is that consumers had default judgements taken against them without even knowing they were sued.
Don’t ignore your Debt Collection letters. Debt collection are a warning. The worst thing you can do is throw them away. If they say something that is prohibited by law, they could be worth $1000 to you. If it is 100% legitimate, it could notify you that a law suit is on the way. Do you want to trust your credit history on the hope that the process server is going to make sure you get that piece of paper?