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CA calls every day on my cell; First time in trouble. Please help.


pablo9
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Hello everyone,

For last 10 days I've been really reading a lot on this website, because I didn't want to ask stupid questions some people do. I'm at the point that I need help to plan my strategy with collection agency and my OC - AMEX soon.

Here's my story.

For last two weeks or so I started getting calls on my cell from CA. Every day.

I usually don't answer 800 numbers. I let them record the message and if it's something important I call back.

This guy would just introduce himself and asked to return the call and left the number. (I hate calls like this). I didn't call back because I've never heard about him or the company he represented.

After a week I decided to google the name of the company. It appeared it was a CA agent.

I had some financial problems last year, but nothing to be concerned about.

Anyway, I pulled my credit report from TU and EX a week ago and it showed the scores of 715 and 740 with all accounts in good standing and 1 inquiry from this CA.

I checked all my accounts online and I noticed that my AMEX CC has been canceled.

I didn't use their card recently because I had high balance and I wanted to figure a way to pay it back first. I admit I didn't make a payment for last 3 months.

My last statement says that my account is seriously past due and I need to make a payment to avoid collection. The due date was mid April. I made an electronic payment 3 days before due date and called them 2 days after to start negotiating some terms to settle my debt with them.

They told me they already reffered my account to the outside CA for collection. I told them that I would expect to get any information in writing before they do things like that and they replied that I had my statements for that. AMEX refused to connect me with any account supervisor to discuss this any further.

Are they allowed to do that???

Few days ago I accidentally answered the call from CA agent. It was my birthday and I didn't look at the caller ID because a lot of my friends called that night.

I know I was not supposed to disscuss anything with him and I didn't, but he was just pushing and pushing.

He told me I got myself into big trouble and he's there to help. He offered me another credit card and requested to make a full payment as sson as possible to avoid more trouble.

I was very calm and polite. I told him that I don't know him or his company and I don't know how he got my cell phone number. I said I need some time to verify that they are who they say they are and that their actions are legal.

I requested not to call me before I do that.

I also requested to put all he said in writing and send it to me. He said they have sent numerous letters regarding this situation. I think it's a lie, because my account has been cancelled 2 weeks ago. How many letters can you send in two weeks ???

I asked him to send it registered mail to make sure I get it. He refused telling me that he's not going to waste any more time and his client money for this case and if I don't pay, he's going to send it further to the state attorney.

At this point I really had enough. I told him that I will not discuss anything with him before I verify all information and I finished the conversation.

Despite the fact that I told him not to call me, he still calls every day.

Should I request it in writing and fax it or mail it to CA? I know I should request the validation of the debt, but should I send a request to verify that the CA agent that called me really works for them first?

What should I do next? How to bite this? I would appreciate your help guys.

Thanks.

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So far, not bad. You need to send a letter to the CA telling them not to call you on your cell and to only contact you in writing. You need to call AMEX and explain about your payment made before the due date, etc. And follow up with a letter and proof of payment dates.

You really should have paid SOMETHING on the balance and not let it go three months!

Get yourself a notebook or spreadsheet and start documenting ALL communications for possible violations to use later.

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You really should have paid SOMETHING on the balance and not let it go three months!

Don't take this the wrong way SAW. It is not a dig at you. I just want to disspell any ideas that paying each month, at least something, will prevent any collection. I went about my merry way paying HSBC $55/mo for years. I missed a payment (while deployed) and forgot about it. I continued to pay $55/mo. when I should have been paying $110. Long story short, it was sold to LDG Financial in Jan. Man, I was pissed. No notice of pending CO or anything. I just all of a sudden couldn't access the account on the web. Called and found out it was CO! I have always heard if you pay $1/mo., that they can't send you to collections. Wrong. So, moral of the story, even if you pay something, there are consequences. Thanks for letting me ramble. Again, SAW, no offense.

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I called AMEX, but they didn't want to talk to me because the account has been referred to the outside agancy.

They told me they were allowed to do this any time according to the cardmember agreement (probably one of those fine print information on the 10th-11th page you never get to).

The thing that really pisses me off is that they didn't call me or send me any warning in the mail. My last billing cycle ended 03/19/07, they mailed it probably next day. I got the statement around 23rd and that was also the date they cancelled my account and referred it to the collection agency.:-(

That was all I was able to find out. What should I do next?

The agent that called me said that his CA had sent me a letter regarding this account. I didn't get it or I trew it away. I get so much junk mail that if I see a name that I don't have account with or simply don't recognize, I put it in the recycle bin right away.

Maybe they did send me a letter, maybe not???

Should I ask them to send it again or should I just send them a C&D and DV letter at this point??

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Send the DV NOW. Do it any way you want but send it. If you did receive a letter and are within the 30 days, they will stop contacting you and will likely bounce the account back to AmEx. If AmEx sent your account to collections two weeks ago, you are well within the 30 day period. The CA always calls before sending letters. My experience with CAs working for Amex before the account is charged off is that they don't validate after receiving the DV request. They will stop collection efforts and bounce the account back to AmEx, where the process will start again.

And making small payments to keep the account from charging off should not be a part of your settlement strategy, if that is your goal with this account. The creditor will only settle if your account is months delinquent. And being delinquent might not be enough if your credit report shows you paying other creditors. If they see you have money to pay others regularly, they will want some of that money for themselves.

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  • 2 weeks later...
The thing that really pisses me off is that they didn't call me or send me any warning in the mail.

Of course they did, they sent you statements with notations that the account was past due. That is ALL they are required to do for notification. They do NOT have to tell you when they send it out to collections.

AMEX plays hardball, the meanest form there is. Don't expect to get them to settle, and if they do, they won't take less than 80%.

That bit about a 'state attorney' from the CA - did he actually say that ?? No 'state attorney' would have anything to do with debt collection, - FDCPA violation there.

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It was not 'state attorney', but some regular attorney's office in TX (I'll keep the name of the lawyer anonymous).

Shall I call back and ask for mailing address so I can send a DV letter?

As far as debt settlement, I don't mind paying AMEX what I owe them for purchases. I just don't want to pay them for late charges and interest fees. Also, since they took away all my membership reward points I never had a chance to use, I'm not going to pay annual fee for the card.

I think it's a sweet deal for AMEX, if they only wanted to negotiate with me. As for now, I guess I have to focus on this thing with CA.

So what you think, guys?

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