Bill Summary for H 561 (2023-2024)

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Summary date: 

Apr 19 2023

Bill Information:

View NCGA Bill Details2023-2024 Session
House Bill 561 (Public) Filed Monday, April 3, 2023
Intro. by T. Brown, Howard, Bradford, Carney.

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Bill summary

House committee substitute to the 1st edition makes the following changes to new GS Chapter 1H, the North Carolina Coerced Debt Relief Act.

Amends the definition of claimant to include (was, include but not limited to) a debt collector or a debt buyer. Amends the definition of sworn written certification, which requires the document to be accompanied by one of eight listed items, to include (was, include but not limited to) information such as a credit card number or loan number to identify the associated account and the person in whose name the coerced debt was incurred.

Adds a new section to the Chapter, providing for filing a complaint or counterclaim under the Chapter. Makes organizational changes to move the following proposed provisions to new GS 1H-6: previous GS 1H-5(g); and subsections (a), (b), and (d) of previous GS 1H-6. Makes conforming changes to renumber sections and subsections as necessary. Makes technical changes to statutory cross-references. Refers to "counterclaim" rather than a "cross-complaint" by a debtor.

Regarding a court's authority to take steps necessary to prevent abuse of the debtor or an immediate family member of the debtor, provides that these steps may include (was, include but are not limited to) sealing court records, redacting personally identifiable information about the debt and any immediate family member of the debtor, and directing that any deposition or evidentiary hearing be conducted remotely. 

Regarding a claimant's right to collect a coerced debt from a person who used or possessed money, goods, services, or property obtained through the coerced debt, specifies that a claimant does not have standing against the debtor. Eliminates the Chapter's severability clause and the provision limiting Chapter 1H to debts incurred on or after July 1, 2023, except that a debtor may file a cross-complaint in an action filed by a claimant to collect a debt incurred prior to July 1, 2023, unless a final judgment has been entered in that action.

Enacts an uncodified severability clause. Adds that the act applies to debts incurred or actions filed on or after July 1, 2023.