Maxed out your credit cards? No problem. You’ve got a Dear friend in court.
Brooklyn state Civil Court Judge Noach Dear has tossed reams of cases against alleged deadbeats who stiffed Visa, American Express and other creditors, using any excuse to wipe out their debts, say plaintiff lawyers.
Half a dozen attorneys who appear regularly before Dear told The Post they couldn’t remember winning any credit-card cases in his court, even when defendants admitted they owed money.
“He literally throws out millions of [dollars] a year that is legitimately owed to direct creditors like Citibank and Discover,” said one lawyer.
“With Judge Dear, it’s dismiss, dismiss, dismiss,” said another plaintiff attorney who asked not to be identified. “It’s impossible to win a case. It’s like ‘The Twilight Zone.’ ”
In Dear’s sprawling, 11th-floor courtroom in Downtown Brooklyn, there’s no secret whose side he’s on.
“I like to fight for the underdog,” he once said — adding that he believed 90 percent of credit-card debt to be faulty.
So he routinely dismisses motions by collectors, finds fault with their records and witnesses and makes quick rulings against them, sometimes proceeding right to trial the first time a matter is in front of him, lawyers said.
One suit involved Felicia Tancreto, a 55-year-old Bensonhurst resident who was found by another judge to owe $16,107.12 on her AmEx platinum Costco card — a debt she’d racked up through personal shopping.