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Thank God for this forum-PLEASE HELP!

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Hello, I'm a newbie and I was wondering if you could help me with a few questions. I found this forum yesterday and have been reading ever since! You guys are amazing! I was wondering about debt validation. What does it mean and can I still do this in my case: I live in Florida and received a letter from the Law Offices of Noam J. Cohen, P.A. Their address shows Miami, FLA. and their website is www.FLORIDACOLLECTIONS.NET, they are admitted in FL, N.Y. AND N.J. I am giving you all this info. in hopes of making it easier for someone to give me a response. PLEAZZZZZ! It is for a debt on my Juniper CC of $1,736.80.

They state:

RE: LHR, INC. as successor in interest to JUNIPER BANK

Our law firm has been retained by LHR, INC., in the above-referenced matter to collect the outstanding balance of $1,736.80 with respect to this delinquent account.

Please forward your check to this office. Said check should be made payable to Noam J. Cohen, P.A. Trust Account and the above-referenced file number should be inserted on the lower left hand corner of the check.

We hope that this matter can be resolved promptly and amicably.

SHOULD THIS MATTER FAIL TO BE RESOLVED WITHIN THIRTY (30) DAYS FROM THE DATE OF THIS LETTER, OUR CLIENT HAS AUTHORIZED US TO FILE SUIT WHEREIN YOU WILL ADDITIONALLY BE LIABLE FOR OUR COURT COSTS. WE WILL THEN PROCEED VIGOROUSLY TOWARDS OBTAINING A JUDGMENT AND WILL EMPLOY ALL LEGAL METHODS AT OUR DISPOSAL TO COLLECT THIS OUTSTANDING DEBT.

PLEASE GOVERN YOURSELF ACCORDINGLY!

What is my first step? What's the worst that can happen? I'm not working because I have a baby. I have a bank account that's barely paying my monthly bills. My husband and I own a house together, but that's it! Please respond. Any and all replies will be truly appreciated.....Will be waiting!

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Couple of more questions....

is that all the letter said or did you leave off parts? anywhere did it say "this is an attempt to collect a debt....." yada, yada, yada?

This isn't a notice of a suit being filed so calm down, it's just a scare tactic to get you to call them, deal with them, pay them.

Your first step is to read this:

http://www.creditinfocenter.com/rebuild/debt_validation_workflow.shtml

Although this is a "lawyer" letter, it sounds as though they are just another JDB with someone lawyerish on the letterhead so treat them as a collection agency.

Second, you need to write a response to this letter requesting debt validation. Here is a link explaining this:

http://www.creditinfocenter.com/rebuild/debt_validation.shtml

Keep it simple, do not volunteer information and if you need direction use the form letters, but remember to adjust them and personalize, don't just copy. If you want a critique, then post your letter after writing for people to comment.

Third, send the debt validation (DV) letter by certified mail, return receipt requested.

Fourth, if you haven't already then go online and request your annual free credit reports from all three agencies. Go here: https://www.annualcreditreport.com/cra/index.jsp

Lastly, review the reports and dispute any listings of this debt as directed.

Hope that helps.

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1 When LHR bought the debt, did you receive a letter notifying you?

559.715 Assignment of consumer debts.--This part does not prohibit the assignment, by a creditor, of the right to bill and collect a consumer debt. However, the assignee must give the debtor written notice of such assignment within 30 days after the assignment. The assignee is a real party in interest and may bring an action in a court of competent jurisdiction to collect a debt that has been assigned to such assignee and is in default.

2 This letter demands payment WITHIN 30 days even IF the 1692g notice is there, it is overshadowed.

3 Like the previous poster said, did they include the language about 30 days to dispute?

4 If an attorney has not reviewed this letter personally, there may be other state and federal violations there.

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Couple of more questions....

is that all the letter said or did you leave off parts? anywhere did it say "this is an attempt to collect a debt....." yada, yada, yada?

This isn't a notice of a suit being filed so calm down, it's just a scare tactic to get you to call them, deal with them, pay them.

Your first step is to read this:

http://www.creditinfocenter.com/rebuild/debt_validation_workflow.shtml

Although this is a "lawyer" letter, it sounds as though they are just another JDB with someone lawyerish on the letterhead so treat them as a collection agency.

Second, you need to write a response to this letter requesting debt validation. Here is a link explaining this:

http://www.creditinfocenter.com/rebuild/debt_validation.shtml

Keep it simple, do not volunteer information and if you need direction use the form letters, but remember to adjust them and personalize, don't just copy. If you want a critique, then post your letter after writing for people to comment.

Third, send the debt validation (DV) letter by certified mail, return receipt requested.

Fourth, if you haven't already then go online and request your annual free credit reports from all three agencies. Go here: https://www.annualcreditreport.com/cra/index.jsp

Lastly, review the reports and dispute any listings of this debt as directed.

Hope that helps.

Thank you so much for responding so quickly. Yes, yes all that stuff about this letter being an attempt to collect a debt and so on, 30 days etc. to dispute validity etc. was at the bottom in small fine print. Sorry, I didn't include that before....

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1 When LHR bought the debt, did you receive a letter notifying you?

2 This letter demands payment WITHIN 30 days even IF the 1692g notice is there, it is overshadowed.

3 Like the previous poster said, did they include the language about 30 days to dispute?

4 If an attorney has not reviewed this letter personally, there may be other state and federal violations there.

Thank you also for responding so quickly! You fols are wonderfu around here! I never received anything from LHR. I received the letter from the LAW OFFICES OF NOAM J. COHEN, P.A. and it stated RE: LHR, INC. as successor in interest to Juniper Bank. And, no I can't afford an attornet to review this...

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I meant if their attorney did not approve or review the letter, it is a possible violation of the law on their part.

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I meant if their attorney did not approve or review the letter, it is a possible violation of the law on their part.

Oh, I didn't know the part about the attorney. I have no idea. How can I find out?

In the meantime I'm sending a copy of my debt-validation letter without all of the personal mumbo-jumbo so you can take a look real quick. I just copied and pasted from the link. I've been doing A LOT of reading, and I finally know what DV means.

I just don't know who to address it to. Do I send it to the Law Offices of Noam J. Cohen, P.A. or do I need to find the address of LHR? It came from Noam's office in RE: LHR, INC. as successor in interest to Juniper Bank (whatever that means!) Juniper Bank is who I got the cc from.

In the meantime do I contact all 3 Credit bureaus and dispute or only one?

The letter (of course) looks like this. I'll fill in everything of course before I send it!

September 13, 2007

Your Name

123 Your Street Address

Your City, ST 01234

ABC Collections

123 NotOnYourLife Ave

Chicago, IL

September 13, 2007

Re: Acct # XXXX-XXXX-XXXX-XXXX

To Whom It May Concern:

This letter is being sent to you in response to a notice sent to me on September 30, 2002). 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:

What the money you say I owe is for;

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

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

Provide a verification or copy of any judgment if applicable;

Identify the original creditor;

Prove the Statute of Limitations has not expired on this account

Show me that you are licensed to collect in my state

Provide me with your license numbers and Registered Agent

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.

I would also like to request, in writing, 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 the address noted in this letter by USPS.

It would be advisable that you assure that your records are in order before I am forced to take legal action. This is an attempt to correct your records, any information obtained shall be used for that purpose.

Best Regards,

Your Signature

Your Name

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It is really best to not use the form letter word for word. You need to read through the posts on the debt validation forum about this. Simple is always better... also, the form letters are somewhat outdated and incorrect.

Usually a simple one like this is best:

I received your correspondence from such and such date. I have no knowledge of this account and request you validate the debt as required by the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act. Please provide evidence you have the correct person, that you have any legal standing to collect this debt and that I have any legal obligation to pay you.

Please be advised that all telephone calls to my home number may be recorded, and no telephone calls may be made to my place of employment, as my employer prohibits such calls.

Thank you.

I do not actually sign my letters because then I'm providing them with my signature... not trusting them behave, they could copy it onto a contract then try to say I signed it. Be sure to send it certified mail with a return receipt so you can document exactly when they received it.

At the same time, pull your credit reports and dispute this debt with them. If the CA validates the debt to the credit bureau without answering your DV then they are in violation. You can dispute online with the credit bureaus but be sure to print out the verification page so you will have a record of the date you disputed.

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follow what the others have said, I just want to mention that a friend of a friend was sued by LHR, INC back in June, all I can tell from the case info online is that it was dismissed by parties whatever that means... so definitely don't ignore it.

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It is really best to not use the form letter word for word. You need to read through the posts on the debt validation forum about this. Simple is always better... also, the form letters are somewhat outdated and incorrect.

Usually a simple one like this is best:

I received your correspondence from such and such date. I have no knowledge of this account and request you validate the debt as required by the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act. Please provide evidence you have the correct person, that you have any legal standing to collect this debt and that I have any legal obligation to pay you.

Please be advised that all telephone calls to my home number may be recorded, and no telephone calls may be made to my place of employment, as my employer prohibits such calls.

Thank you.

I do not actually sign my letters because then I'm providing them with my signature... not trusting them behave, they could copy it onto a contract then try to say I signed it. Be sure to send it certified mail with a return receipt so you can document exactly when they received it.

At the same time, pull your credit reports and dispute this debt with them. If the CA validates the debt to the credit bureau without answering your DV then they are in violation. You can dispute online with the credit bureaus but be sure to print out the verification page so you will have a record of the date you disputed.

Hello and thank you so much for your advice and input in my miserable situation!

I'm going to send in the shorter version of the letter you sent me, and I won't sign it like you suggested. I'm going to type this letter, therefore shouuld I type my name at the bottom of the page, and that's all?

I've already printed out my credit report from one Bureau, and I'm doing the rest today. On the first credit report it says the account is from LHR, and if you remember from my post it came from the Law Offices of Noam J. Cohen in RE: LHR, INC. as successor in interes to Juniper Bank. So, I may sound dumb here, but do I send my DV letter to Noam or LHR in N.Y.? I live in Florida and Noam's office is in Florida, also.

Another dumb question-when we talk about contacting CA's to dispute-does that mean I'm saying I never used this CC to make charges? I just need to know all the legal mumbo jumbo behind all this, because I used the cc to make charges. Know what I mean?

Anyhow, I'm sending this pm, because I wasn't sure if you'd see my post. I have about 14 days left to do all this so as you can understand-I'm desperate!

Please respond-

Thank you so much....

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follow what the others have said, I just want to mention that a friend of a friend was sued by LHR, INC back in June, all I can tell from the case info online is that it was dismissed by parties whatever that means... so definitely don't ignore it.

I'm not planning to ignore it! I'm not being sued by LHR-they gave the acoount to Noam Cohen's office. I don't know-maybe it's the same thing...

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I'm going to type this letter, therefore shouuld I type my name at the bottom of the page, and that's all? Yes

I've already printed out my credit report from one Bureau, and I'm doing the rest today. On the first credit report it says the account is from LHR, and if you remember from my post it came from the Law Offices of Noam J. Cohen in RE: LHR, INC. as successor in interes to Juniper Bank. So, I may sound dumb here, but do I send my DV letter to Noam or LHR in N.Y.? I live in Florida and Noam's office is in Florida, also. Send it to whoever you received the correspondence from.

Another dumb question-when we talk about contacting CA's to dispute-does that mean I'm saying I never used this CC to make charges? I just need to know all the legal mumbo jumbo behind all this, because I used the cc to make charges. Know what I mean? Most people dispute as not mine.

Anyhow, I'm sending this pm, because I wasn't sure if you'd see my post. I have about 14 days left to do all this so as you can understand-I'm desperate!

Please respond-

Thank you so much....

Good Luck.

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Good Luck.

Thank you so much brokeinok, and to everyone else who answered!

I hope you don't mind me asking one more thing: I got two out of the three credit reports I requested. That made me feel real good.

However, when I tried getting my report from Trans Union it stated: cannot give out personal statement for some security reasons (they don't give them out online). I'm starting the DV process as you know, and brokeinok -you said to dispute with the Credit Bureaus at the same time I send out my DV letter to that attorney. My question is do I request it by mail or by phone? I hate doing it by phone as I won't have any substantial evidence in my hands if you know what I mean.

I'm on a time crunch. I must have everything done and sent out by the end of this month. Any suggestions? Should I just put in a dispute with the other two agencies for now and send out the DV letter? Thank you so much!

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