pulpfiction0

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pulpfiction0 last won the day on September 7

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  1. Why not turn the tables and make collection calls to Unifund's compliance department? Be sure to begin each call with the required Mini-Miranda 'this is an attempt to collect a debt...' The contact info for their compliance person is here: http://www.unifund.com/contact-us/ If they don't send a check in a few weeks, you may want to contact an attorney in the state they are incorporated in (Ohio). You'll have to domesticate the judgment, and then get a writ of execution. Hire a bunch of movers, a U-Haul, and get a marshal to start seizing office equipment, computers, etc. They'll quickly write you a check for the $1k plus the cost of the movers, etc. If you don't mind a road trip, recording the whole thing and putting it up on YouTube would be a nice bonus. Be sure to email a link to David Rosenberg, their scumbag CEO.
  2. Yes, it is. I've had a good deal of success dealing emailing the other side's attorney either right before filing an arb claim or right after. Otherwise, all arb would have accomplished for me was delaying the inevitable judgment/wage garnishment. I was able to get reasonable settlements at payments that fit into my budget from some of the most feared OC's (Amex, Citi) by playing the arb card without running up costs. However, since you're dealing with Midland, the one and only settlement you should accept is a mutual walkaway, unless the situation is keeping you up at night and you have the funds to settle. As you should know from reading the board, its rare that a JDB will follow you into arb beyond the initial stages. If you don't mind sticking it out, I'd take the strategy of running up their costs to such a degree that they will have to drop it.
  3. The search feature in the forums is helpful. I'd use it to further research arb in TX. This is the template I use: 1. On or about xx/xx/xxxx, Plaintiff filed its case against Defendant. 2. Defendant moves this court to compel Private Arbitration in accordance to the Terms and Conditions of the Credit Card Agreement (see Exhibit A, attached). 3. In a letter to Plaintiff’s attorneys dated xx/xx/xxxx, Defendant informed Plaintiff of its intent to exercise the Arbitration Clause contained in said Agreement (see Exhibit B, attached.) 4. The parties are bound by the Credit Card Agreement. The Agreement states, in part, (a) You or we may elect to resolve any claim by individual arbitration. (b) If arbitration is chosen by any party, neither you nor we will have the right to litigate that claim in court or have a jury trial on that claim (c) You or we may otherwise elect to arbitrate any claim at any time unless it has been filed in court and trial has begun or final judgment has been entered (d) Claims will be referred to either JAMS or AAA, as selected by the party electing arbitration. Claims will be resolved pursuant to this Arbitration provision and the selected organization's rules in effect when the claim is filed, except where those rules conflict with this Agreement 5. The Federal Arbitration Act (“FAA”), USC 9, Section 1-2 provides: “A written provision in any maritime transaction or a contract evidencing a transaction involving commerce to settle by arbitration to settle a controversy thereafter arising out of such contract or transaction or the refusal to perform the whole or any part thereof or an agreement in writing to submit to arbitration an existing controversy arising out of such contract, transaction, or refusal, shall be valid, irrevocable, and enforceable, save upon such grounds as exist at law or equity for the revocation of any contract.” 6. The Supreme Court ruling AT&T Mobility V. Concepcion 563 U.S. 333 (2011) states that courts must enforce arbitration agreements according to their terms. If there is an arbitration clause in the contract, that clause must be honored. “We have described this provision as reflecting both a “liberal federal policy favoring arbitration,” Moses H. Cone, supra, at 24, and the “fundamental principle that arbitration is a matter of contract,” Rent-A-Center, West Inc. v. Jackson, 551 U.S. 63 (2010) (slip op. at 3). In line with these principles, courts must place arbitration agreements on an equal footing with other contracts, Buckeye Check Cashing, Inc v. Cardegna, 546 U.S. 440, 443 (2006), and enforce them according to their terms, Volt Information Sciences, Inc v. Board of Trustees of Leland Stanford Junior Univ., 489 U.S. 468, 478 (1989).” Furthermore, “The “principle purpose” of the FAA is to “ensure that private arbitration agreements are enforced according to their terms.” Volt, 489 U.S., at 478; see also Stolt-Nielsen S.A. v. AnimalFeeds Int’l Corp, 559 US 662, 130 (2010) (slip op. at 17). This purpose is readily apparent from the FAA’s text. Section 2 makes arbitration agreements “valid, irrevocable, and enforceable” as written (subject, of course, to the savings clause); §3 requires courts to stay litigation of arbitral claims pending arbitration of those claims “in accordance with the terms of the agreement”; and §4 requires courts to compel arbitration “in accordance with the the terms of the agreement”; and §4 requires courts to compel arbitration “in accordance with the terms of the agreement” upon the motion of either party to the agreement…” 7. The Defendant elects arbitration via JAMS to settle this dispute. WHEREFORE, Defendant moves this Honorable Court to compel private contractual arbitration pursuant to the Cardmember Agreement and to dismiss Plaintiff’s complaint due to Lack of Subject Matter Jurisdiction or in the alternative, to stay proceedings pending contractual arbitration. Respectfully submitted, (Your name) Defendant, Pro Se
  4. Hence my disclaimer about not residing in Texas, as well as every state having their own nuances of civil procedure. In my state, a MTC in lieu of an Answer is fine. I was simply offering OP general advice. C'mon.
  5. You need to file a Motion to Compel Arbitration. Do you have a copy of the template? Stranger things in life have happened, but I can't see any way LVNV follows you into arb. Especially not for a relatively low balance account. 1st step is to get your MTC granted. Insist that the other party initiates. Disclaimer: Not an attorney. Not a Texas resident. Every state has their own nuances of civil procedure. Hopefully someone with experience in the particularities of TX can chime in. You'll want to know whether you can file a MTC in lieu of an Answer, or in addition to one. In some states, filing an Answer is considered a waiver to arbitration.
  6. Wise words, indeed. Definitely something I am going to keep at the forefront of my thoughts, moving ahead. I do intend to 'pay it forward'. BTW, the Citi attorney I dealt with was quite kind. A pleasant, easy experience. My advice to anyone dealing with the 'big boys' (aka Amex/Citi/Discover): get creative and daring. Never attempt to negotiate with 'phone collectors', as they have zero decision making authority, and are working from a script that only allows them to take payment in full (or very close to it). Learn how to use your state court's website. Research the pleadings that the attorneys dealing with your case typically file. You'll often be able to find email addresses this way. Send a well written email. Proper grammar and spelling go a long way toward establishing credibility. Don't threaten. Keep it simple. Provide your phone number, along with a statement that you're willing to lift the cease & desist (assuming your DV contained verbiage along the lines of 'all calls are inconvenient') on your account for settlement purposes, only. The law firm may have a company-wide policy against communicating with consumers via email, so don't necessarily expect a reply to your email. Once in communication with an attorney, a decent settlement is definitely possible if one takes the right approach. Don't go on about how expensive arb is for their client, FDCPA violations, etc. What they and their client care about are any financial hardships you may have been experiencing. Anything else, they're more than willing to battle out in court/arb. Come to the table with realistic expectations. Realize that these accounts are handled VERY differently than a JDB account. No, they won't settle for ten cents on the dollar...or even thirty. Outside of extraordinary circumstances, be prepared for a settlement no better than 50% of the debt. It is entirely possible, however, to pay it over the span of several years.
  7. I can live with it. The very low monthly payments will have minimal impact on my finances, but it will take quite awhile to pay off. Lowball settlements apparently do not happen with Citi, so I'm not going to keep pushing. Getting this off my plate will without a doubt help me sleep better at night. Thank you all for your input.
  8. Well, things move fast when you push the right buttons, apparently. They've offered to settle for about half the balance, at very low (under $100) monthly payments. Given Citi's reputation, I should probably just shut up and take it, right?
  9. I'm not going to initiate arb against myself. The notion of that is completely absurd. What's next...writing myself a speeding violation, as well?! At this point, I'm okay letting things play out. As mentioned, it will likely take some time (potentially LOTS of time if there is a 2nd Covid wave this fall/winter) for them to file suit. At that point, I simply MTC, emphasizing that Citi must be the party to initiate. Unfortunately, judges here often ignore pro se defendants (they essentially let Amex's attorney in a previous case dictate that I had x days to file in JAMS), so in the end I may have to initiate. Fine. The AAA process, with appeal, could take a year or even two. As Citi's attorneys, unsurprisingly, haven't responded to my settlement offer, I'm okay with letting this drag on for potentially several years. In the meantime, I will have paid off my Amex settlement, and SOL will be approaching on my other accounts. I'll also put aside a settlement reserve for Citi
  10. " 'We won’t initiate arbitration to collect a debt from you unless you choose to arbitrate or assert a Claim against us" I haven't been sued (yet). The account was with another law firm who actually served me with papers without replying to my DV. I immediately emailed the attorney, who did not actually file the suit with the court and provided validaty. The account was then passed on to the current law firm.
  11. Bentrud involved an arbitration at a very different stage than that referred to here. He was about to get racked up on SJ before electing arbitration; here, no litigation has even begun (yet). A quote from the 7th Circuit in that case: "his remedy sounds in breach of contract, not the FDCPA.” So the appropriate course of action is a breach of contract action against Citi?
  12. If we were in Small Claims, I'd agree completely. The amount here is under 10k, but still above Small Claims limits. That said, courts in my state are operating on a very limited basis. I regularly check the online dockets, and the law firm has essentially stopped filing new cases during the Covid shutdown. It's anyone's guess as to when the courts will be up and running at full speed again. Sure, they can ignore my settlement offer, but they might not even be able to sue me until well into 2021. Then we'll go through the whole song and dance of filing a MTC and arguing over who needs to initiate. When the case finally gets to AAA, scheduling an in-person hearing could take quite some time. By the time we get around to the conclusion of the appeal, it could be 2023 or 2024. If Citi wants to wait 3-4 years (a rather optimistic estimate given the incredible backlog these lawsuit mill firms are going to have once things get back to 'normal'), so be it. I fully realize Citi does not operate logically and just wants to send a message via it's draconian collection pursuits.
  13. While there's no case law (yet) to claim that it is, a logical argument can be made; 1) By electing arb in a DV, the attorney is precluded from filing suit. 2) As such, filing suit is no longer an action, and doing so would constitute an fdcpa violation (threatening to take or taking an action that cannot be legally taken).
  14. Not much has happened (yet). I elected arb in my DV letter to them, and made it clear they would be facing an FDCPA suit if they decide to sue instead of arbitrate. They sent a packet with AAA forms partially compled, demanding that I initiate. Not going to happen. Not only is that contrary to their arb clause, but it's absurd that I'd file a claim against myself. Their claim; their burden. I emailed their attorney a lowball settlement offer. Haven't heard back thus far, and don't really expect to. If Citi wants to continue to play hardball...fine, they can wait to file once the Covid situation has resolved and courts are actually in-action. They'll then get a motion to compel arb along with an FDCPA suit. I'm okay with letting this drag on for several years.
  15. DV letter to Citi's attorney contained an election of arbitration. Received a packet from attorney demanding I initiate (they're 'giving' me 30 days to do so), along with the AAA forms they filled out (just the basics, along with a general statement about the debt in the part of the form where you describe the issues). What, exactly, requires that I initiate? Citi's arb clause: "We won’t initiate arbitration to collect a debt from you unless you choose to arbitrate or assert a Claim against us". I chose to arbitrate. Therefore, their clause states they will initiate. Or am I interpreting this incorrectly? Is the issue that AAA won't accept a debt collection arb from them...at least not without a court order? Also contemplating emailing Citi's attorney to talk settlement. I know Citi is a huge PITA who will spend many multiples of the balance it is seeking in arb, but given the uncertainty with the Covid situation (state courts here aren't scheduling civil matters) perhaps they'll be willing to take a quick settlement for 30% or so. Your thoughts would be appreciated.