I've received a summons today (8/22). Actually I came to my parent's house for the weekend and my father received the summons for me. It's from New Century Financial Services, as assignees of Citibank. I have couple of issues. I'm about 99% sure the account is not mine, because I've had 4 credit cards (from MBNA, AMEX, CAPITAL ONE and AT&T) which were all obtained in 96, my first year of college. I cancelled AMEX in second year, I've settled with MBNA directly years ago (don't know exactly when), and with Capital One as well as AT&T, I'm enrolled in a debt program thingie with a non-for-profit company called auriton. By the way, the complaint says "upon information and belief that the defendant entered into a Retail Charge Account Agreement.." does that mean credit card? or one of those store-exclusive cards? I've never owned any store credit cards. After studying this board, I know that I should answer the summons denying all allegations. The problem is, the summons is dated 06/30/03, which is probably the date that it was drafted. Its now two months later and I'm already screwed (it says i have 30 days to answer). So I thought maybe I should file something with the court asking for more time but there's not a file # or index # or anything, except a barcode at the bottom right corner and numbers and letters on the bottom left. So how would I be able to reference this case if i were to file even an answer with the court? I don't know if i should contact the New Century etc about this matter directly. Or should i attempt contacting the Harris and Assoc or Citibank? I'm confused. Another issue is that this summons reminded me that i have received collection letters in the past pertaining to some store charge cards that i never owned (ie, jc penney, kohls, and one other) which i chose to just ignore. The question is, would the merchants be able to affect my credit rating by just my name alone? both my first and last name is common and when i received those collection letters, i just ignored it because i thought it was a simple mistake on their part. Now i'm freaking out because, well, there may be more summonses(?) on the way. (i'm sorry this is taking so long.. but i did try to research this issue on my own.. 5 hours later, i'm not making significant advancements.. and my nails are bitten to the bone..) Finally, this experience has shed a light, and i think i have to be more responsible about my credit. I will order my credit reports but where do i go from there? I will appreciate any good articles or links to helpful media materials. Thanks a bunch! I am not scared after reading about other people's experiences, but very frustrated that I don't seem to know much in this arena. Please help me.