What can I do if I recieved a summons for a debt collection and have no clue how to go about answering it?
What's needed? I would like to settle out of court and I contacted the plaintiff 2 times now with no response. I can't afford a lawyer and have no clue about the process. Could someone please help me?
You're doing what you should--trying to contact the other party. If that person or business has an attorney, try to contact the attorney too--maybe the plaintiff will not deal with your directly. At the end of the day, however, you can't make them talk to you or setttle; that is voluntary. What you should do is keep copies of your offers to settle and send them in some way that you can prove they were delivered (e.g. maybe fed ex, cert. mail with return receipt, and fax--all three). That way, when you get to court--and make sure you show up for it! and also that you send an Answer in to the summons (you can contact your court on-line or in person and explain you are a "pro se" litigant; there should be sample forms and instructions available to help you)--you can show your good faith efforts to resolve the matter.