Debt defense? Can you ward off a creditor without bankruptcy? More often than you might think. Consider this scenario.A client, being sued by American Express, has no hope of paying back a $25,000 debt — and to make matters worse, he didn’t incur the charges. His ex-wife did.

 A look at the complaint reveals two immediate potential defenses. AMEX alleges an “agreement” between the client and AMEX but not a “written agreement.” Consumer credit transactions must be in writing to be enforceable. No written agreement is attached to the lawsuit.

Moreover, the AMEX account dates back to 2006. There’s no evidence that any of the charges were incurred in the last six years. Collection of a debt requires the filing of a lawsuit within six years of default.

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