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How to Determine just who to sue


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I have been trying to DV Verizon Wireless West on an account that appears on my CR stating Account Closed 10/04. They have not answered my DV or the followup. I am getting ready to write an ITS and I am trying to determine the corporate entity here. The CR states "Verizon Wireless West", yet I can find no corporate registry entry in Washington and California has no central database. Any idea how I can find out if this is an independent corp or just a division of Verizon?

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Well, what's the deal with the account? Is it not yours? Is it reporting wrong? Who have you talked to there? Any higher-ups or just normal CSRs?

Verizon isn't a collection agency and doesn't have to follow any rules of the FDCPA...therefore doesn't have to respond to a debt validation letter.

Don't go jump into a boat that's sinking...make sure you know exactly what you're doing first. Spell the situation out a little more and maybe we can help you out.

:D

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The rest of the story....I was a bit shy on details in my last post.

I have never had any type of service with Verizon. Sprint and AT&T only. This is on my CR for $143 with a date of 10/04. I have sent them dispute and investigation requests twice, once pre-FACTA, once post FACTA. We are now at 60 days plus with no response. The CRAs sent back a verified and I have sent a PR to them which has not been answered yet, but the request went out 10 days ago.

Verizon has hosed a family member and a friend in the past concerning overages which only got addressed after an AG/FTC complaint and I am in no way wanting to cut them slack. My position is that if they will not investigate and respond, I will sue'em and they can pay.

So my question is more to the point of getting ready to send an ITS and go to court. I want to make sure I get the right corporation as it is not unheard of to create a holding company for each division and I would need to sue the correct company.

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It would help to brush up on your terms. You cannot "DV" an original creditor. Sure, you can send them a DV letter and they can throw it in the trash, which is probably what they did, and there is nothing you can do about it. FACTA does require them to notify you if your dispute is frivolous or irrelevant. They are also not required to investigate a dispute if they have already investigated a dispute initiated through the credit bureaus within a certain time frame. I think it's 30-60 days. In that case I'm not sure if they have to notify you if your dispute is frivolous/irrelevant or not.

You can send them a dispute, much in the same way you dispute with the credit bureaus, however you must follow specific guidelines as stated in section 1681s-2 paragraph (a) sub-paragraph (8) part (D). If you do not comply with FACTA regarding your dispute they do not have to comply with FACTA. For a dispute letter to an OC under FACTA, I recommend cutting and pasting part (D) and its sub-parts and providing the information required in the sub-parts to avoid getting rejected for being frivolous or irrelevant.

You do realize that Verizon, like the over-whelming majority of utilities, does not report to credit bureaus. That mean that a collection agency is probably reporting that trade-line. There is also the possibility that Verizon has sold the debt to a junk debt buyer and the junk debt buyer is reporting the trade-line. If it is a junk debt buyer. In either case, it violates section 1692e(14) to use a name other than their own to collect or attempt to collect a debt.

Having said that, you need to determine whether it is a CA or JDB. It makes a big difference. A CA never has a duty to invetsigate, except that now under FACTA a CA has a duty to report to the original creditor the fact of ID theft or fraud. A JDB always has a duty to investigate.

You might be able to use inquiries to match up the trade-line with the CA or the JDB. Otherwise you'll have to order a copy of your credit report to see who the CA or the JDB is.

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In trying to be short and to the point and not make a long post, it has turned into that. I in fact sent a letter of dispute and investigation request that required compliance under FACTA. Not a standard DV letter, but it has the same intent. The first letter was pre 1 Dec 2004 (FACTA effective date) so at that point there was nothing requiring compliance but thought I would try anyways, the second was post 1 Dec 2004 and they have no choice under the law other than reply one way or another. Under FACTA the OC bears a lot of responsibility and liability now.

Verizon is in fact reporting this on my credit reports as that is what I am working from. A simple search with Google shows that Verizon will report late pays on your credit report as there are a ton of sites that indicate that. The TL with all 3 CRAs is for Verizon, with an address that matches an office in California, not some CA.

My question was how I can identify the corporate structure to sue the proper entity vice how to proceed. The issue that has me stumped at the moment is determining if I sue Verizon itself of if Verizon Wireless West is an independant corporation that needs to be sued directly. The California Secretary of States Web Site says there is no such business as Verizon Wireless much less Verizon Wireless West, although there are about 30 derivations of Verizon listed in their database.

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I am going to answer my own question here. I found that the corporate registry for Washington State has about 30 different entities related to Verizon, the same goes for California. I found some cases in Pacer that had been dismissed because of sueing the wrong company that was just a division of that company, but seperately incorporated.

What I did is took the address on my credit report and called the business license clerk in that city and asked for the business license information for that address.

Lo and behold:

Verizon Wireless (VAW), LLC

180 Washington Valley Rd.

Bedminster, NJ 07921

(908) 306-7000

Doing some further research I find that the VAW form of the company is Verizon Airtouch Wireless and is the holding company for all assets of both Verizon and Airtouch when they merged, and it is the parent company.

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Doing some further research I find that the VAW form of the company is Verizon Airtouch Wireless and is the holding company for all assets of both Verizon and Airtouch when they merged, and it is the parent company.

You need to be careful going after a "holding company" A case was dismissed against Capital One and the plaintiff was ordered to name the correct party because she went after Capital One Financial Corporation (the holding company) but should have gone after Capital One Bank (the credit card company subsidiary).

http://forum.creditcourt.com/discus/messages/4781/5337.html

It's definitely difficult to figure out exactly who to sue, when they have holding companies, subsidiaries, DBAs, etc. Best of luck, and when you find out exactly who it is let us know. VW is on my list too.

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In my case the address on my CR has one entity licensed to do business at that address, Verizon Wireless (VAW), LLC. So if they want to claim "wrong company" I have them for more reporting false info.

Yes I agree, it can be very difficult to chase down the correct DBAs, multiple entity corps, etc. My route was to find the business license info for the address being reported to make sure I had the correct entity, then have a copy sent to me so I have it in hand when going to court. My task would have been harder had there been multiple businesses licensed out of that address.

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