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Collection agency sent settlement. Should I try to validate


Ron Santo 10
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A collection agency recently sent me a settlement offer for 50%. Should I send them a validation request or jump on this offer? I would like to hold on to my $2,500 if I can. My other thought was to send them a check for $500 with the proper wording to reflect this amount as payment in full as refrenced ion this site. All help is thankfully appreciated!

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Far too much information not supplied to answer this question...questions such as...

1. Do you KNOW you owe the debt?

2. Is the amount they are requesting correct?

3. Does this CA have the legal authority to collect in your state?

4. Does this CA have the legal authority to collect on behalf of the Original Creditor?

5. Is the debt within the SOL?

6. Do you have the money?

The answers to these and other questions all paly a part in knowing whether you need to go through the debt validation process or not but at a minimum, if you don't know the answer to at least most of these question then I wuld suggest that it's too early to pay this CA anything no matter how good a "deal" this might seem to be.

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Thanks for the quick reply. Here are the answers to the best of my knowledge:

1. Do you KNOW you owe the debt?

I amassed this debt while going through a divore several years ago. I believe that I had paid this balance down significantly, but now the balance is huge.

2. Is the amount they are requesting correct?

I was not the best record keeper back then, so I don't have a great peper trail, but the amount they are asking for seems far too much.

3. Does this CA have the legal authority to collect in your state?

Not sure. That is one of the questions posed on the validation letter on this site.

4. Does this CA have the legal authority to collect on behalf of the Original Creditor?

Not sure. That is one of the questions posed on the validation letter on this site.

5. Is the debt within the SOL?

What is the SOL? 7 years? 9 years? And from what point is it calculated? This is a cc. Is it the date that the OC closed the account?

6. Do you have the money?

I could afford $500. $2,500 would be tough for me to handle.

I don't want to make a bad situation worse. If this seems like a good idea to pull the trigger on their offer, I could live on Raman Nodles for a year with a $2,500 hole in my pocket, but I would prefer not to.

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The $500 payment for settle you are referring to is called A&S. They are tricky and most likely do not work. Even worse, when you send money or (in some states) even OFFER to pay, you reset the SOL.

Before you do another thing, you need to read alot of topics on this site, especially the topics on validation, accord & satisfaction, settlement, and the statute of limitations. If you do not, you will step on a mine in the minefield that is credit repair.

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If your last payment was over 5 years ago I'd tell them to pound sand. Who is it? Merchant's Credit Guide? A$$et Acceptance?

I got a few "settlement offers" for almost 10 year old debt. I told them it's past SoL and to go pound sand, and cease and desist any further collection activities concerning this or any other accounts the company would have on me.

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Thanks for everyone's help. This is the first letter from this collector. I found an older copy of a tri-merge report from last year. This report showed the Citibank account as a charge off. It states the DLA is 3/2004, but I know this is not correct. I haven't used this card in years!! Maybe this is a payment that I made to them? So I believe that this is the first letter from the CA. Would you all suggest that I send a validation letter? Or will this only stoke a fire under their behinds to come after me?

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Some questions to add.

1. When was the divorce?

2. Were you primary or an AU on the account?

Since Midland is a JDB, you can be sure they have no proof of debt. If the divorce was near 12/1998 as the others mentioned, you are probably safe in regards to the SOL. But, to be sure you will have to do some research. Compare your two Tri-merges and see if the dates correspond between the OC and the CA, if any dates are present. More than likely there are no dates to really compare. If Midland is reporting, then the date known as the reported since would tell you when they purchased the debt and began reporting. By law, they are to report the original DOLA on their TL. But, too many JDB's use their own dates as a way to extend the reporting period.

Therefore, I would do one of two things. On your 3 in 1, you can determine which one, or all, is reporting the TL. Then send for a copy, or do so online, of an individual CR so you have all of the necessary info to work with. The OC's TL would show their dates as well as the CA will show theirs. This should give you the date you need. From that point, if the debt is timebarred, you can just send the C&D as advised by the others. Or, you can send the DV and hope they just go away, which they have done in the past to others. What you would want to include is that the debt is so old, and since you were positive it was paid in full on or about ??? due to a divorce, they must show proof of debt and how they arrived at their figures, along with all of the other required info. Then, once tjhey receive the letter, sent CMRR, you can watch your CR's to assure they noted the TL as "disputed". Then, when they don't you hit them with their violations and go from there.

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