Bill Collectors Harassing You? Action Can Be Taken - It's Your Call
Making The Right Moves...
Knowing The Ins and Outs of Collections and Credit
Did you know?
A Debt Collector can not call you back if you hang up on them, for 7 working days. They cannot threaten to sue you either. Unless it's absolutely their usual company process. Threatening to sue you, and then not suing, is actually a violation. They are not allowed to curse at you, or say things like, "we'll take your house", and "we'll put you in jail", or we'll ruin your credit", or "we'll call you repeatedly", and so on. You can hang up on a bill collector, and if they are compliant, they will not call you back until the following week. Unfortunately many do call back, harass, oppress, abuse, and violate the laws left and right.
You want to know about this, because even people who pay their bills are being harassed by debt collectors, on an hourly daily basis. That's right, you pay your bills, and still get harassed. To the tune of the next 10 years to come believe it or not! I'm one of them. Here's what is going on with many, many people around the world.
One Example Scenario: Very Common
You have a credit card for example. You pay the debt in full, and close the account. You think it's closed, and that's the end right? Wrong...unfortunately for all of us, these banks, creditors, and loan companies are selling the debts, over, and over, and over for a period of 10 years plus. In the recent years, while things were actually going bad, (under all the fluffer nutter in the news) banks, and credit card companies, and the like began struggling. The trickle down factor is that the little guy gets hurt when big creditors, banks and such struggle or go under.
What happens is they sell their written loans, credit card debt, and bad debts to cash out of the situation. They buy these accounts at a huge whopper of a discount. We're talking 2 cents per account. The bank has already received a tax break/write off, and has cashed out of the debt by getting .02 cents for it. Imagine if you will, you're $5000 credit card debt was just sold to another company for a whole .02 cents. The new owner of that debt gets to collect the full amount plus all cost, and inevitably interest on a Judgment if they sue.
When a Portfolio of accounts are sold, they are sold in batches of millions. Your one account doesn't have too much value all by itself. When a batch of accounts are sold, I have found, and witnessed "personally" a huge amount of accounts that are: Deceased, Bankrupt, Paid In Full, or previously Settled, are conveniently included in the batch.
They do this on purpose to make the batch Portfolio look larger, and more appealing. Only a serious buyer, with experience in the industry would know to do intense Due Diligence on the portfolio, to determine if in fact the batch has inserted files which will never be collected.
It doesn't matter how well you paid, if you paid on time, if you didn't, or if you went bankrupt. You're all batched together and sold, over and over too many times to count. You could be the perfect borrower, and still be harassed because of this. It is literally a living nightmare.
I will be exposing a few chronic offenders here on this hub to watch out for. Nevertheless, beware, and be on guard to these agencies buying debt. They usually run credit reports, which will leave a negative inquiry. The medical industry is absolutely famous for destroying peoples credit. Usually concluding in the end, it was their fault for not billing properly.
I have personally witnessed people being destroyed over some of the most rediculous things I've ever seen. Who do you turn to when this happens? There's no Credit Destruction Hot Line or anything to call. The credit repair scams will undoubtably rip you off blind, and the debt consolidation companies just want to play with your money. I haven't found one yet that pays anyones bills on time. They skim their fee's off the top, and that's their main priority.
If you think someone else is going to care more about "your" credit, and Your Bills...Think again. These companies are doing nothing, but inviting themselves into your wallet! Pay your own bills as best you can.
If you can't pay your bils, then go pick up a bankruptcy kit at staples, and file it yourself! It's self explanatory, and you can post any questions you have here. It's approx. $200 to file it, and comes in carbon copy, so press hard. Make an appointment for a credit counselling company to get the Voucher needed. Then go to the local Courthouse to file it, and pay your fee. It's called "Pro Se". You do not need an attorney to file any chapter of Bankruptcy. It stops all creditors from proceeding against you.
There are a few choices you have. Each one is labeled as such, and explains what applies to each one. Home owners would file a Chapter 13, and so on. No assets would file a Chapter 7. The Clerk at the Court will let you know if anything has been filled out wrong.
This is one of your Consumers Rights, don't feel embarrassed about it. It's a necessary component to assist the people, to gain relief. Those creditors who aren't getting paid have already taken a tax write off, sold the debt, and cannot even remember who you are.
All debts whether paid or not are being sold on a regular basis, (avg. every 3-6moths) for a period of 10 years. The bottom line is the tactics are out of control, and literally monopolizing all of our time. It is not going to get any better any time soon either.
Which is the reason I've written this hub. I'm hoping to help arm people with some necessary ammo to protect themselves, and their credit. I'll be happy to answer any questions, or listen to any cases of harassment. I was one of the first Collectors to be Certified in US. I was also one of the youngest females, and one of the first to sue in NY against "attorneys" for violating collection laws.
I successfully won the case against the 2 attorneys in the 80's for the violations. I was 19 years old, and my Mommy was standing in the back of the court room. lol. I had a stack of case histories in my hand, and showed the judge which laws they violated, and how they were certainly not exempt from the law, "because" they were attorneys, and I won the case. The judge shook my hand, and thanked me for educating him on the law. The court room (a public one) was roaring, and clapping.
It was quite an experience, considering how these two attorneys were treating me in the hall before the hearing. They thought they were going to make mince meat out of me...lol
Here's the best part. One of the attorneys involved was investigated by me, and others because of my case. It was also discovered that she had, and was imbezzling thousands of dollars from another client. She was immediately banned from practicing, and her license was pulled. She was also banned from the state of florida because of the case. Both ended up with permanent records for life, as well as losing major clients, etc.
That was when I was 19! I'm now 43, and I still haven't met anyone, including attorneys who have actually read the the Commercial Code, or the Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, etc. I've actually read these laws, and memorize important sections that apply to the here, and now. Call me whacky? Maybe. I haven't lost a fight yet. Including how I got my $768.oo credit from Verizon, and how I got my other $368.00 credit from Verizon, and my $1100.00 credit from the Electric Company, and the fight with the Vitamin Store $$230.00, and the appliance company for $60.00...Should I go on? There's more...lol
When you know the contents of the book you're throwing at them....boy does it help! lol The moral of this story is yes life is a constant battle...but if you arm yourself with at least the things that coincide with your money, your assets, and your credit you will be much the wiser, should something go wrong...and it usually does. Sticking together, and sharing knowledge is the best way to gain education, use others education, and in turn become educated along the way.
I have won many cases, and actually played a small part, (or maybe a large one who knows) in many of the laws in collections being changed over the years. I have had very large agencies shut down in roughly 24 hours, of learning of their illegal practices. One of the largest I had shut down, I had worked for for years. I never had to break any laws, as a matter of fact, I enforce them constantly.
Consumers need to have someone on their side, as far as I see it. Who better than someone who is fluent in the law, and experienced in the industry. I'm well respected, and also feared by many in Collections. I could be a danger to them if they're doing anything illegal. I used to work with the Chief Investigator at the FTC, exposing geological scams. Then we moved onto Collection firms, because the abuse became so rampant. Then he retired, and I continued.
By the way: This is important. Beware when Settling a Judgment for less than the full amount! If you pay less than the full amout owed, including all the interest (which will be calculated) you are going to receive a 1099 in the mail from the IRS. All courts have to report satisfied Judgments. They never tell you this either. Whatever you "Don't" pay on a judgment is counted as, "Additional Income" for the year, and will absolutely come back to haunt you, and totally screw up your taxes!
Here I am today...Ask anything you want about Collections, Credit, Debt, Banruptcy, and your variety of financial dilemmas.
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- MotherGoddessEarth.com Nationwide Non Profit Corp. - Law Firm
Specializing in education to the public! The Universal Language Of Love
Paid Debt Sold 25 Times! Read the latest Complaints: Dec. 2009
Here's the latest Complaint filed against the 17th Firm (one week ago Dec. 09) who has purchased this paid debt from 1999. I'm still pinching myself, to make sure this is actually real...lol...The complaint worked, and the calls stopped suddenly. I'm waiting for proof now. I am not impressed with this firm at all. I'm quite underwhelmed.
Farmingdale, NY 11735
Let this serve as Official Complaint, and Notification to Cease & Desist all your collection activity immediately, directly, or indirectly with me. You are hereby notified in writing that this is a paid in full debt from 2003. This is an Official Dispute, and Complaint against your firm(s).
You are in violation of my Consumer Rights! Not only is this debt paid, but it was paid in 2003, as it clearly states on my credit profile. You are now the 17th firm to buy this paid debt.
Had anyone done proper due diligence on the paper you're buying, maybe this could have been avoided. There is a clear statement to that effect on my credit report, and you are in violation of several laws.
First you will immediately file a Discontinuance, closing this case. You will close the file, and agree that you will not Resell it again. You will remove your Inquiry from my credit report, and any derogatory account reporting. You will forward me a letter of confirmation the case is closed, with confirmation that you have destroyed the file, and removed all my information from your system. You will also forward me copies of the entire file.
Should you fail to do so, I will continue filing complaints with every entity governing law firms, and collection agencies, and proceed to the fullest extent of the law.
Being in the industry for 28 years, (in many capacities) I will not allow this to go any further. I find it to be lacking logic, that you're buying paper beyond the statute, already beat to death by at least 15-20 firms across the country. I've actually been tracking this the whole time.
Since your firm has taken a daring approach to the collection of old paper, you can also take what goes with it, an official complaint.
Proceed at your own peril,
*Copying certain officials as indicated below.
Letter 2: Past The Statute
PR Associates Po Box 2480 Neverland, Mn. 40802
Attention: Federal Compliance Dept.
To Whom it may concern:
You are hereby Officially Notified to Cease and Desist all collection activity directly, or indirectly with me. I am disputing the validity of your alleged claim. You are in violation of my Consumer Rights, and violation of Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Your attempts to threaten me into payment of a debt exceeding the statute by more than 6 years. Furthermore, it is deceptive practice to harass, oppress, or abuse an individuals rights, under which my rights have been violated by you.
You are hereby Ordered to destroy the file immediately, to insure continuous harassment ceases. Should you fail to this immediately (upon receipt of this communication) you will be held liable for any future harassment from factoring purchasers, agencies, law firms, etc.
Confirmation within 5 days from receipt of this Official Notification sent to you certified mail, requires your prompt attention to this matter, under several federal acts, including the commercial code. You are required by law to respond to this communication within 30 days or less. Heed this warning, as you are now under federal scrutiny of compliance with all prevailing federal laws.
Proceed at your own peril.
Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.
CC: Federal Trade Commission
Regional Office: Consumer Complaints
6th and penn, sw
Wash. DC. 20600
Attorney General State Of
Attorney Local, Esq.
You Can Copy and Paste these letters: Compliments of MGE Non Profit Corp.
Actual Copy of Complaint Against Law Firm
This is an actual Complaint written by me, for me against a company (Law Firm) my favorite...lol...who has violated my rights to an extreme. I have an attorney looking into it now, who has already won a case against them, and Trans Union, for the very same reason. This is a real life, current situation I am going through. Ironically even with all my 26 years experience, I too have become a victim countless times.This is an actual copy of the letter that has been sent to them. Nothing in it has been changed. (note: no longer formatted for court purposes)
Dec. 29, 2007
VIOLATION OF FEDERAL LAW:
FDCPA Violation(s), FCRA Violations, Consumer Rights
To whom it may concern; GREETINGS
You are hereby Ordered to, "CEASE & DESIST" from any further collection action, or activity directly or indirectly with the above named consumer. This debt is in official dispute, you will provide copies of an itemized breakdown of the alleged debt owed.
In compliance with the U.S. Commercial Code, you are required to respond to this, "Certified Return Receipt Requested" written communication within (30) days.
Failure to do so will result in violation of the U.S. Commercial Code, by your company.
You are now under State and Federal scrutiny, for violating the, "Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act", A Consumers Rights, and possibly additional, "Federal Act's".
Sect. 804. (15 USC 1692b): Acquisition of location information: Not state that a consumer owes a debt. Prohibited use of of language or symbol on any envelope, or in the contents of any communication indicating the communication is from a debt collector. Third party disclosure on an answering machine several times.
Sect. 805. (15 USC 1692c): Communication in connection with debt collection: Third party disclosure on an answering machine.
Sect. 806. (15 USC 1692d): Harassment or abuse: Causing a telephone to ring repeatedly 2 - 4 times per day for an extended period of time..
Sect. 807. 15 USC 1692e): False or misleading representations: (A) the character, amount, or legal status of any debt. (5) the threat to take any action that cannot be legally taken.
Sect. 808. (15 USC 1692f): Unfair practices: Using any language or symbol other than the debt collectors address, on any envelope when communicating with a consumer by use of mail.
Sect. 809 (15 USC 1692g): Validation of debts: (a) within (5) days after the initial communication; send a written notice containing- (1) Amount of the debt; (2) Name of the original creditor to whom the debt is owed to; (3) A statement that unless the consumer, within thirty (30) days after the receipt of the notice, disputes the validity of the debt, or any portion thereof, the debt will be assumed to be valid;
Sect. 811. (15 USC 1692i): Legal actions by debt collectors:
(a) Any debt collector who brings any legal action on a debt against any consumer shall --
(1) in the case of an action to enforce an interest in real property securing the consumer's obligation, bring such action only in a judicial district or similar legal entity in which such real property is located; or
(2) in the case of an action not described in paragraph (1), bring such action only in the judicial district or similar legal entity --
(A) in which such consumer signed the contract sued upon; or
(B) in which such consumer resides at the commencement of the action.
(b) Nothing in this title shall be construed to authorize the bringing of legal actions by debt collectors.
§ 812. Furnishing certain deceptive forms [15 USC 1692j]
(a) It is unlawful to design, compile, and furnish any form knowing that such form would be used to create the false belief in a consumer that a person other than the creditor of such consumer is participating in the collection of or in an attempt to collect a debt such consumer allegedly owes such creditor, when in fact such person is not so participating.
(b) Any person who violates this section shall be liable to the same extent and in the same manner as a debt collector is liable under section 813 for failure to comply with a provision of this title.
§ 813. Civil liability [15 USC 1692k]
(a) Except as otherwise provided by this section, any debt collector who fails to comply with any provision of this title with respect to any person is liable to such person in an amount equal to the sum of --
(1) any actual damage sustained by such person as a result of such failure;
(2) (A) in the case of any action by an individual, such additional damages as the court may allow, but not exceeding $1,000; or
(B) in the case of a class action, (i) such amount for each named plaintiff as could be recovered under subparagraph (A), and (ii) such amount as the court may allow for all other class members, without regard to a minimum individual recovery, not to exceed the lesser of $500,000 or 1 per centum of the net worth of the debt collector; and
(3) in the case of any successful action to enforce the foregoing liability, the costs of the action, together with a reasonable attorney's fee as determined by the court. On a finding by the court that an action under this section was brought in bad faith and for the purpose of harassment, the court may award to the defendant attorney's fees reasonable in relation to the work expended and costs.
(b) In determining the amount of liability in any action under subsection (a), the court shall consider, among other relevant factors --
(1) in any individual action under subsection (a)(2)(A), the frequency and persistence of noncompliance by the debt collector, the nature of such noncompliance, and the extent to which such noncompliance was intentional; or
(2) in any class action under subsection (a)(2)(B), the frequency and persistence of noncompliance by the debt collector, the nature of such noncompliance, the resources of the debt collector, the number of persons adversely affected, and the extent to which the debt collector's noncompliance was intentional.
(c) A debt collector may not be held liable in any action brought under this title if the debt collector shows by a preponderance of evidence that the violation was not intentional and resulted from a bona fide error notwithstanding the maintenance of procedures reasonably adapted to avoid any such error.
(d) An action to enforce any liability created by this title may be brought in any appropriate United States district court without regard to the amount in controversy, or in any other court of competent jurisdiction, within one year from the date on which the violation occurs.
(e) No provision of this section imposing any liability shall apply to any act done or omitted in good faith in conformity with any advisory opinion of the Commission, notwithstanding that after such act or omission has occurred, such opinion is amended, rescinded, or determined by judicial or other authority to be invalid for any reason.
Each section of the Act listed here has been chronically violated over & over & over.
The phone calls, the constant harassment, the endless Third Party Disclosures on my answering machine 4 & 5 times a day will stop immediately. You literally harassed me now for well over a year with no end in sight! I have repeatedly hung up on your calls, only to be called right back the same day, and the next day. In all my years in this industry I have never seen such a blatant case of chronic daily violations.
In your attempts to collect a prior paid debt, you have just created the worst case of harassment against a consumer. You obviously have not done your due diligence properly, on paper you buy. You have literally called me every single day (3-4 times each day, even after you were hung up on) for over a year now for a paid debt. It clearly indicates on my credit report, which you were not authorized to access, that my debts are paid. I am worse than outraged!
You are not only violating my rights, as a consumer, but have also prevented my life from moving forward. Even after requesting you stop calling here, you continue to harass me non stop every day including Sunday!
Not only does it state those facts on my personal credit report, but it also states I am debt free for over Five years.
Your Alleged Summons & Complaint was allegedly served on an address that doesn't even exist! Your bogus court documents are a fake. You are merely conducting a mail blitz to see who you can scare into paying you. Sewer service has failed you!
I am extremely fluent in all the laws governing your industry. After researching it, I've confirmed you are absolutely CHRONIC OFFENDERS of violating all the laws of this industry.
All of your highly illegal activity is documented, grounding it in stone. Copies of this Official Complaint will be sent to each entity below, and action will be taken against you to the fullest extent of the law. You are now notified, and will answer to my attorney*, and the governing bodies listed here. A copy of this complaint in email, paper, or fax will be considered original.
Proceed at your own peril,
CC: Federal Trade Commission
600 Pennsyvania Ave., N. W.
Wash. D.C 20580
Dept. Of Consumer Affairs
66 John St.
NY, NY 10038
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: Handles FDCPA
Better Business Bureau
of Metro NY
257 Park Ave S
NY, NY 10010
NYS Bar Association
1 Elk St.
Albany, NY 12207
PO Box 390106
Minneapolis, MN 55439
Commercial Law League Of America
70 East Lake St.
Chicago, Il. 60601
Some Things Going On:
This is a copy of a case I was following. 2006
FTC Stops Nationwide Debt Negotiation Scheme
September 22, 2006
As requested by the Federal Trade Commission, a federal judge has issued a temporary restraining order against a nationwide operation that claimed it could reduce consumers’ debt by up to 60 percent, leading many people into financial ruin and bankruptcy. The FTC charged five companies, including Homeland Financial Services, National Support Services and Prosper Financial Solutions, and their principals with deceptive and unfair practices in violation of Section 5 of the FTC Act.
“These defendants are charged with targeting consumers who were knee deep in debt and luring them with false promises,” said Lydia Parnes, Director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection. “Consumers should be leery of anyone who says they can eliminate your unsecured debt, or that you can pay it off for pennies on the dollar. Debt negotiation can be very risky.”
According to the FTC’s complaint, the defendants have falsely claimed that, for a non-refundable fee of up to 15 percent of a consumer’s unsecured debt, they could reduce all of their unsecured debts, including credit card balances and medical bills, by as much as 40 to 60 percent. To the extent that the defendants initiate negotiations with creditors, they typically have begun only after a consumer has paid 30 to 40 percent of the fee, which could be up to three months after a consumer has stopped making payments to creditors, as the defendants have advised them to do, the complaint stated. The defendants rarely have negotiated settlements with all of a consumer’s creditors, and even when they have successfully negotiated an account, in many cases, the settlement amount is significantly more than 60 percent of what they owe.
In many instances, the complaint stated, the defendants have not contacted a consumer’s creditors to offer a settlement, and consumers who have stopped making payments have been sued by creditors or debt collectors, resulting in garnishment of their wages, additional interest charged to their account, interest rate increases, and late fees. According to the complaint, many consumers who have enrolled in the defendants’ program have seen their credit rating worsen substantially, and typically within six months of enrolling, most consumers have left the program and have found that their debt has grown as a result of penalties, fees, interest, and other charges.
The FTC charged the defendants with misrepresenting how much they could reduce consumers’ debt; not adequately disclosing the likelihood that consumers would be sued if they took the defendants’ advice and stopped making payments to creditors; not disclosing that consumers’ account balances would grow from interest, interest rate increases, late fees, and other charges; and falsely advising consumers that negative information that appeared on their credit report as a result of participating in the defendants’ program would be removed upon completion of the program.
On August 9, 2006, the court issued an ex parte temporary restraining order against Homeland Financial Services, National Support Services LLC, United Debt Recovery LLC, Freedom First Financial LLC, and USA Debt Co, LLC, and their principals, Dennis Connelly, Richard Wade Torkelson, and Joanne Garneau (doing business as Prosper Financial Solutions). The order froze the assets of defendant Dennis Connelly and appointed a temporary receiver over the defendants' businesses. On August 11, 2006, the court extended the asset freeze to defendants Richard Wade Torkelson and Joanne Garneau. A hearing on the issuance of a preliminary injunction and the appointment of a permanent receiver is set for October 11, 2006.
The Commission vote to authorize staff to file the complaint was 5-0. The complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
Some of My Favorite Sites
- Home - MotherGoddessEarth.com
Nationwide Non Profit Corp. - Faith Based Matriarch Society and Lifestyle. Creating Self Sustained Green Options for people to rebuild their lives. Operating through Love.
- FTC: Federal Trade Commission
I had to remove the copy of the Law itself, it was too large. It can be found at this link. All Laws are at this site.
- My Fav Law Site
To look up Laws, and Cases
The best site when you need to find somebody! All Skip Tracers use this site
Another Favorite among Skip Tracers
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