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Settlement Offer - can't afford it!


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Brief background: I'm a California resident. I was laid-off from a good job in Sep 2003. With the job market changes, I haven't been able to find decent paying jobs anymore. Currently, I'm a student getting re-trained, which can be proven in State records. Yes, I'm a starving student, so to speak. :lol:


I have a credit card account that was written off as a bad debt (about 2 months ago). I just received a settlement offer from ACCOUNT SOLUTIONS GROUP (ASG) for an amount of money that I will not be able to pay. IMO, since the account is already written-off & my credit is damaged for the next 7 years, I'd like to just let the debt go unpaid.

I'm going to mail a notice that all communications must be in writing. My question is...should I respond with a debt validation letter even though I won't ever be able to pay, anyway? Or, is there another course of action I should be heading for?

Thank you, guys. :)

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i have to ask if that was their first communication with you?

and yes, i do the whole DV thing regardless of whether you can pay or not.

The first communication was actually a telephone call in which I VERY STERNLY informed them that I will NOT discuss any credit matters via telephone and, if they have a legitimate reason for contacting me regarding the debt, they will have to submit their correspondence in writing to me.

Thanks. I'll include a debt validation.

This is what I sent to a CA after my other credit card was also written-off:

To Whom It May Concern:

This letter is being sent to you in response to a notice faxed to me on June 29, 2004. Be advised that this is not a refusal to pay, but a notice sent pursuant to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 USC 1692g Sec. 809 (B) that your claim is disputed and validation is requested.

This is NOT a request for “verification” or proof of my mailing address, but a request for VALIDATION made pursuant to the above named Title and Section. I respectfully request that your offices provide me with competent evidence that I have any legal obligation to pay you.

Please provide me with the following:

1) A complete itemization off all monies, including balance, interest, penalties, fees, etc.;

2) Explain and show me how you calculated what you say I owe;

3) Provide me with copies of any papers that show I agreed to pay what you say I owe;

4) Identify the original creditor;

5) Show me that you are licensed to collect in my state;

6) Show me that you are licensed to work in your state (New Jersey);

7) Provide me with your license numbers and Registered Agent;

8.) Provide written proof that any payments that I make will be properly applied towards the account in question;

9) Provide correct contact information for Falconbridge Partners.

This letter also serves as written notice that no telephone contact be made by your offices to my home or to my place of employment. If your offices attempt telephone communication with me, including but not limited to computer generated calls and calls or correspondence sent to or with any third parties, it will be considered harassment and I will have no choice but to file suit. All future communications with me MUST be done in writing and sent to (((my mailing address))) by USPS. My counsel insists that EVERY correspondence from your firm be in writing and signed by your management.

At this time I will also inform you that if your offices have reported invalidated information to any of the 3 major Credit Bureau’s (Equifax, Experian or TransUnion) this action might constitute fraud under both Federal and State Laws. Due to this fact, if any negative mark is found on any of my credit reports by your company or the company that you represent I will not hesitate in bringing legal action against you for the following:

Violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act

Violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act

Defamation of Character

If your offices are able to provide the proper documentation as requested in the following Declaration, I will require at least 30 days to investigate this information and during such time all collection activity must cease and desist.

Also during this validation period, if any action is taken which could be considered detrimental to any of my credit reports, I will consult with my legal counsel for suit. This includes any listing any information to a credit reporting repository that could be inaccurate or invalidated or verifying an account as accurate when in fact there is no provided proof that it is.

If your offices fail to respond to this validation request within 30 days from the date of your receipt, all references to this account must be deleted and completely removed from my credit file and a copy of such deletion request shall be sent to me immediately.

Best Regards,

This validation was sent to a fraudulant CA. I'm assuming that this CA is legitimate, however.

Sound like an okay letter to send in response to a settlement offer? Any suggested changes?

Thank you!

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ok, first communication was a phone call.. did they during that call read you your rights? did they tell you that you had 30 days to dispute etc?

coz if they didnt, and then a settlement offer was the next thing they sent, and that offer didnt tell you of your rights, thats wrong. and you could prolly get a little more specific in your letter telling them they have already violated your rights..

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Honestly, I wasn't aware that any of my rights were violated.

I was surprised how QUICKLY I was able to shut down the CA rep during the phone call. I used a deep voice and very STERNLY insisted that all communications be in writing, per my counsel's advice. :twisted:

No, my rights were never discussed during the phone call.

And, here's what the offer letter says:

"Dear (me),

As an authorized representative of our client, Capital One Services, we have permission to offer you an opportunity to pay less than the amount due. This settlement, as offered, shall be in the total amount of $a lot$.

"This settlement offer will expire unless we receive your payment of $a lot$, due in our office on or before 9-30-04.

"Should you accept this settlement offer, upon receipt and clearance of your payment, we will notify our client so it can update its records accordingly to reflect a settlement in full.

"If you have any questions relative to the above referenced settlement, please do not hesitate to contact our office toll free at 888------. Our office hours are....

"This is a communication from a debt collector. This is an attempt to collect a debt and any information obtained will be used for that purpose.



"A Professional Debt Recovery Agency"


Is there a section number I can reference regarding the violated rights that you speak of?

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§ 809. Validation of debts [15 USC 1692g]

(a) Within five days after the initial communication with a consumer in connection with the collection of any debt, a debt collector shall, unless the following information is contained in the initial communication or the consumer has paid the debt, send the consumer a written notice containing --

(1) the amount of the debt;

(2) the name of the creditor to whom the debt is owed;

(3) a statement that unless the consumer, within thirty days after receipt of the notice, disputes the validity of the debt, or any portion thereof, the debt will be assumed to be valid by the debt collector;

(4) a statement that if the consumer notifies the debt collector in writing within the thirty-day period that the debt, or any portion thereof, is disputed, the debt collector will obtain verification of the debt or a copy of a judgment against the consumer and a copy of such verification or judgment will be mailed to the consumer by the debt collector; and

(5) a statement that, upon the consumer's written request within the thirty-day period, the debt collector will provide the consumer with the name and address of the original creditor, if different from the current creditor.

(B) If the consumer notifies the debt collector in writing within the thirty-day period described in subsection (a) that the debt, or any portion thereof, is disputed, or that the consumer requests the name and address of the original creditor, the debt collector shall cease collection of the debt, or any disputed portion thereof, until the debt collector obtains verification of the debt or any copy of a judgment, or the name and address of the original creditor, and a copy of such verification or judgment, or name and address of the original creditor, is mailed to the consumer by the debt collector.

© The failure of a consumer to dispute the validity of a debt under this section may not be construed by any court as an admission of liability by the consumer.

809. a. thats what they were sposed to tell you.

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I added a simple sentence - making up its own paragraph. I decided to NOT quote the section because I'd rather leave the CA guessing. Good idea, or not?

"Be aware that my counsel is already aware of an existing violation of my rights by your firm according to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act."

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