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Everything posted by StressPot

  1. How much is your time worth? I sued Brachfeld two years ago. My attorney had me come up with a value for my time. This included the time I put forward in research (i.e. reading these forums), estimated the cost of looking for work if I wasn't involved in litigation with them (Gas, Car Maintenance, and yes - my estimated time doing so). Stamps also cost good money, and then there are those sleepless nights I dealt with my stress and acid reflux. Anything you can think of that involved your effort and time, estimate a value. Are you sure you cannot come up with a reasonable estimated cost for your time, lost wages, stamps...ect.? I'm sure you were wanting to do anything else but defend yourself from them - Make em pay for it. StressPot PS> I hope you are able to do something to get it dismissed WITH prejudice!
  2. In my defense, I held a law-breaking collections attorney accountable for her actions. Research Brachfeld, you'll see how sweet and innocent she is. I have settled with reputable CA's in the past. They do exist and they aren't listed on Budd Hibbs or talked about in this forum because they don't break the law. I don't necessarily go looking for a fight but I won't wait to be backed into a corner either. I will always advocate to pay bills on time and only take on what you can handle. I'd have settled this last debt, but LVNV are abusers and they kept screwing it up til I fought back. It's nice to see the bad ones held accountable. I agree with Admin 110% and this was the gist of my response to the OP. StressPot
  3. To my knowledge, the records they look up and sell are "Public Records". If I'm wrong, someone please speak up. With that being the case, CA and JDB alike can spend a little to save a lot. Why use normal methods (harassment, ect...) against someone known ot be sue-happy? It's been long known that the collections industry prey on the weak and uninformed. I have heard of this before yes, and I am happy about it personally. Ever since I sued Brachfeld & Assoc. two years ago and settled out of court, my CR has been pretty clean. Sure my one bad record is still being reported, but there has not been 1 CA harassing me or my family since then. There have not been any pulls made by a CA or the JDB that allegedly owns the debt. I've actually been wanting them to start the harassment back up, I've been bored lately. And lastly, Transunion isn't the only company that offers this service. A lot of them have sprung up. StressPot
  4. Great news!! It's been quite a while since I have settled out of court with Brachfeld & Associates for violations of the FDCPA and WA State Consumer Protection laws. At the time of my lawsuit I had also filed complaints with the WA State Attorney General and the WA State Department of Licensing. Well they move slower than a snail, but I've finally received closure on my WA DOL complaint! See below... The great news is - They have been denied licensing to act as Collection Agents in the state of Washington!! In WA State a company needs to be licensed to do business, and in order to do collections, they need to have a Collections License attached. In checking the WA DOL website, "Law Offices of Brachfeld & Associates" and "Meridian Management Solutions LLC" are licensed to do business in WA, but they lack the Collections license, for now. I am unsure how often they can apply, or even why they were denied. They may keep trying. Brachfeld may be able to get a collections license in the future. For now tho, they have failed in their attempts in WA. To any and all WA state residents that read this forum - do not take abuse from Brachfeld in California. StressPot
  5. Hi Admin! Just my .02... I'd revise the statement: "Under the FCRA and the FDCPA, each violation is subject to a $1000 fine, payable to me." Unless the FDCPA has changed, each violation is not subject to a $1000 fine. For those reading who are not in the know, FDCPA offers relief up to $1000 per action (i.e. filed lawsuit). StressPot
  6. Better yet... Why not send your DV via UPS and write on the mailer "Payment Enclosed". Print out the delivery receipt off the UPS website for your confirmation. StressPot
  7. From what I could find out, WA does not regulate how personal property is handled when dealing with items left in a car when it is repossessed. For example: Hairbrush, maps/tire gauge in glove compartment, Audio CD's in a visor wallet. As I had said before - personal property not attached to the car. I am not sure where the confusion was in me not being specific. My brother is working with the bank at the moment, and just today was able to pick up his non-specific personal effects from the vehicle. Thanks for the effort. StressPot
  8. wahoo238 is correct - personal affects within the vehicle that did not enhance the vehicle (i.e. clothing vs in dash cd player). It is my understanding that in some states it is heavily regulated, and in others it isn't. I cannot find any information for WA, and the AG's office isn't open until Monday. Thanks all! StressPot
  9. I looked around the forums a bit and I could not find the exact info I am looking for. Maybe someone in the know from WA state can help!!! My brother had his car repo'd. In WA state, is it within the law for them to charge a fee to recover any and all property that is not bolted to the car? I will be calling the AG's office on Monday for lack of a good answer. Hope someone can help! StressPot
  10. I'm in a situation where I'd rather eat then pay for telephone service. I think society in general takes services like this for granted. In order to get a job, you need a phone. In order to get a lot of services, you need a phone. I can't even get free credit monitoring without a telephone. I am easily bully'd over the telephone though, so in a lot of ways I am glad I do not have one. Note: Before anyone inquires, my landlord provides my net service as part of my rent. I am really glad to have it!! StressPot
  11. DEANNATX: I visit that website often, and it is painful for me because I choose not to post in defense of people. Reason one - I don't have enough experience fighting CA's and JDB's. And two, the person that posted this is one of many primary posters that "help" consumers. I have tried, and I get the same berating treatment. I have reported threads of his and I am sure others have too. The problem is that the web management doesn't seem to mind the way he "helps". In the past, if there is a violation of the forums rules, the moderators just edit or delete the offending postings. To my knowledge he and his ilk have never been reprimanded even though the rules state violators will be banned/sue'd. With his clan's help, they berate and confuse consumers in the hopes that outside of the forums their victims will pay. Mind you, this is just my assumption, but there is a lot of posted evidence to show I may be right. StressPot
  12. A lot of times people forget to do this: Report them to your states Licensing Agency! Hold them accountable! StressPot
  13. Found this posting interesting. This information shows that it's best to keep everything written/documented then waste your time on the phone. Using the phone is especially dangerous if you find yourself easily bully'd. http://forum.freeadvice.com/debt-collections-84/collections-collectors-pov-443799.html NOTE: This was posted on a website that claims to help consumers with their debts. It's funny to note that the main posters that "help" are collections agents or collections attorney's. I guess the joke is on the poster... StressPot
  14. Perhaps the law was written to punish "dead beat dads" more so then "dead beat moms"? I know in WA, the law and fairness sides with the mothers. In WA, I believe the mom would get sole custody of the children if she sold and abused drugs while the father was a straight laced banker making six figures a year. So I can see where the OP is coming from, the laws can be very unfair to the father, dead beat or not. In that respect, the law violation would be ..."nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."? Am I wrong? Just my .02 cents worth... StressPot
  15. If this debt is now owned by LVNV, then I am not sure why B&A would mislead you to think it is still owned by the OC. Did you ever get a letter or statement from LVNV or a CA stating that LVNV had purchased the debt? Does LVNV have an open trade line on your credit report? I'd definitely hold onto the dunning letter and use it as a violation against B&A. Misleading is misleading (IF LVNV indeed is the current debt owner). Looking forward to updates, and again good luck! StressPot
  16. Even if you aren't served - plan on showing up! You are now armed with the information that there is active litigation proceeding against you. If you aren't served by the time you are in court, that is information you need to pass to the judge. Also plan on filing your answer. If you have any documented violations, you can file a separate or counter suit. If they don't validate before court, then getting them to validate IN court is the way to go. File the appropriate forms to have the court force them to admit what evidence they have against you. Most of the time JDB's will have nothing. Good luck with your situation. Now that the bell has been rung, you can come out of your corner swinging! StressPot:)++
  17. To my knowledge, Brach & Assoc. is not directly related to the LVNV umbrella. They are used heavily though because it appears that they get results and are not very lawful in the way they go about it. Why do they get away with it? There are so many out there that do not know their rights. The majority of consumers remain passive, and do not hold these lawbreakers accountable. Good luck with your situation, not that you'll need it - they like to violate! StressPot
  18. coralfang: Yes, you should send them a letter CMRR right away. You will want to ask them for Debt Validation/Proof the debt is yours. I'd also like to add a little.. If your state requires licensing/bonding - and that collection agency is not licensed, you can consider that violation #1. However since your letters and accusations, and even telling them "you are breaking the law" will do you absolutely no good - just chalk it up and file it away. If you do find that you have a case against a CA for breaking the law, it is easier to show the court it is a "willful" violation if you have evidence to the effect that you tried to show them the light. They continue on the path they are on, then it's willful. The CA knows they are breaking the law - they are banking on that you won't sue them for it. This is because in 95% of cases - it costs them nothing because the consumer doesn't do anything about it - and they end up making more money by violating the law. Very correct. Most CA's assume a consumer will do nothing. They have paid collectors to harass and break you down through the telephone if you step without being prepared. Also, Did you know there are business's that collect court information, and sell lists of "consumer litigators" to CA's so they can scrub their lists? Doing so lets them avoid most of those willing to balk at their efforts. It probably costs them an hour and $50 or so to get licensed in your state. Not doing so might cost them thousands if you follow through. Wrong, licensing and bonding can cost quite of time and money depending on the state and their requirements. If it were that easy they'd be licensed. Does your state have an authority dealing with such licensing? A letter to them will get them licensed most likely - but that doesn't help you at all does it? If it were easy, and the CA smart, then - sure, I'd agree. In your shoes, I'd prefer being able to show them as Willful Violators to a court of law as opposed to doing nothing at all. You need to get a member of the authority to tell you that such and such company is not licensed. A screenshot or a computer file showing the same is probably not as effective as a letter from the state. I disagree. In my state, the attorney I retained used a "computer print out" showing the Collections Law Firm I sued was not licensed/bonded. They settled out of court. This may all be moot - lots of states have laws that say to the effect of: Lawyers or law firms whose primary business is not debt collection, are not required to be licensed as debt collectors. Some states require everyone who collects debts to be licensed. Good point - it is always good to look up your local laws regarding licensing. Remember though, Licensing normally falls on State consumer protection laws in collections cases. My whole point - its not a huge deal. I disagree. The licensing was a big deal in the suit I filed and won. Collect as much information you can. Document all communication and read up on the laws. If you feel your rights have been violated, you may have a cause of action. CMRRR indicates "Certified Mail Return Receipt Requested" Its the only method of communications you should be using with the law firm. Fax's work as well. You have now discovered the debt. You can initiate communications and establish that this is the initial communication with that law firm. It's shaky at best. (have they been sending letters for months? If so they could argue that your mother in laws is the best address they had and that initial communications occured months ago - if they push the point its conceivable that they don't need to stop collection attempts) The concept here is to establish that you now have 30 days to dispute the validity of that debt, and they must stop collection attempts until they provide validation. Maybe, maybe not - document all communication or lack there of. If you pursue litigation, anything to show a lack of initial communication will add more weight to it. If they continue collection attempts during that time prior to validation - they violate the FDCPA. Now you have 2 violations or more of the FDCPA. These violations may be actionable for your actual damages, or $1000 each. First of all - FDCPA violations are only worth up $1,000 per aciton, NOT per violation. An action can be defined as a lawsuit over multiple violations. Licensing is another issue. For example, in the state of WA, actual damages are trippled if the offender is not licensed. If you'd like to make them pay for their mistakes, you will have to use State law along with Federal. Does your state have good consumer protection laws? It would be a good time to look them up. This is just my .02's worth. If I've spoken out of place, I'm sure someone will step up and elaborate or correct me! Thanks and good luck with your situation. StressPot
  19. Yeah, Erica Brachfeld of Brachfeld and Associates. I believe them to be morons, and have sued them in the past. The more I see their name, the more I believe they enjoy breaking the law. I agree 110% - sue her for all it's worth. StressPot
  20. I agree. I am not sure about the legality, but it's a common fact that CA's do and will lie in order to get paid. Most if not all Collection Agents get bonuses at the end of the month as a percentage of what they pull in for the month, that is their motivation for lying to you about the urgency and method (phone only) of payment. You should still send your DV to them, in the mail CMRR so that you get a little green card back. File this card for your records. Personally I would handle all contact through the mail, and let them talk to voice mail/answering machine. On a side note, talking to a CA on the phone is at your own risk. You are not required to give them any information, and rest assured that any information they do get out of you will be used against you. Note: NEVER ever give out your banking or payment information over the phone to a CA. Good luck with your situation and keep reading here! There is a wealth of information at your fingertips. StressPot
  21. Yes and no. While I agree that you are 100% correct, in the OP's shoes I would start to fish for real violations. I post this with the knowledge that when I sued a CA last year, I got a heck of a lot more then $1,000. Look at your state laws concerning Consumer Rights and Collections. Do CA/JDB's need to be bonded and licensed in your state? Now look at your credit reports. Are they doing anything fishy in how they are posting the alleged debts? Keep notes on what laws they may have violated. Talk to your parents and see if they are willing to complete a noterized affidavit in regards to their conversations with the CA's. If this CA truely is doing as you say they are, rake em across the coals and hold them accountable for every real violation you can find. You have time to collect your thoughts and data. When you are ready, a free consultation with a NACA.NET attorney is in order. Then, and only then will you know if you have a good case. The more violations there are (don't make them up either, be sure they are real) the better. This CA sounds very bad, and I am surprised the OP isn't getting better advice. Why do they keep breaking the law??? "Oh, it's only a grand...not worth the time." YES: If it's your debt take care of it, but don't forget to punish the violators too. Sorry, just my .02's worth...don't mean to offend anyone. StressPot
  22. Thank you for the advice, but you are preaching to the choir. I've dealt with offensive CA's before. You should do a search on my name! Pretty much just wondering if anyone has had any encounters with them. I did a search on these forum's and nothing comes up. My post should also alert some if they have been or about to be harassed by a CA that breaks the law. If they send me a letter, then I will answer them. If they break the law, I will sue them as I did the last CA. Anyway, looking forward to any info if someone has experiences to add. Thanks! StressPot
  23. Has anyone ever had an experience with Brasch & McCampbell International, Inc? I ask because my parents were called in the last few months. Collectors call my parents in their efforts to track me down, not that I am in hiding mind you - I still don't have phone service. To my knowledge a message wasn't left. In my research of this company, they are skip tracers and do asset searches. I have also found they have joined the ACA. My search has uncovered a bit of negativity in that they tend to impersonate law enforcement. My family's caller ID Shows: 972-226-3402 Their offices are: 12830 Hillcrest Road Suite 111 Dallas, TX 75230 972-364-9002 (?) www.bramacint.com I am posting this out of concern that they guys appear to break the law, and they have called my parents. If anyone has anything to add, it's appreciated. StressPot EDIT: To my knowledge, they are not licensed to collect in the state of WA.
  24. Interesting indeed! Please, keep us posted! StressPot
  25. I am just wondering why you didn't call the police? StressPot
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