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Focus Receivables reports wrong amount to CRA


BTO429
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I got a letter and a call from focus. Its about a Direct TV account I had before I moved. I moved in april 2009 and canceled the service, the CA says that I did not cancel the service.

I payed the bill in full. But now they hired a CA to collect 829 dollars from me. I asked what the amount was for and was told it was for equipment and four months of service.

I have receipts from Fed EX where I sent the equipment back. So they argued a bit and I said sue me I have the receipts. So they agreed I only owe 160 for the early termination fee.

Now they reported to the CRA"S and they report the full amount of 829 with a balance of 524 dollars.

I told them to send me a bill in writing that they will accept the 160 and close the account. They promised they would accept the payment on the phone and send a letter after the fact. I said no, I do no trust you or any other CA to do any thing you say on the phone. I want it in writing. They said they would send a bill, well guess what I have never got a bill, a letter but they do call everyday and they started hitting my CR.

This killed my score so I am under 600 again. I am debating whether to wait and see if they sue and show the judge my evidence and fight them on the termination fees, or file my own suit.

I think I may just play this one out and see how much trouble they can cause for themselves, most CA's usually do.

Any one see FDCPA, FCRA or other violations?

My main problem would be proving that they agreed on the phone that I only owe 160 dollars. I thought about calling them and telling them they can report the correct balance to the cra's or I will see them in court over it, but then I thought Why would I take money out of my pocket.

Edited by BTO429
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Dispute the debt with the CRAs. If the CA validates, considering you have proof you returned the equipment, you have an FCRA violation for inaccurate reporting and an FDCPA violation for misrepresenting the amount of the debt.

You could write down the details of the conversation in an affidavit. Also, some CAs record calls. You could look into whether or not that's a practice of that CA and possibly subpoena any recordings.

Did the letter they sent you contain the required FDCPA notices?

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I cant find the letter any more. Not sure where it got to. I normally save all that stuff.

But if they validate with the cra's it has been in some courts that any thing from the cra is hearsay.

If the debt is validated with the CRAs, dispute it in writing with the CA. If they don't update with the correct amount, you still have them on an FCRA and FDCPA violation because you have proof you returned the equipment.

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What they agreed to on the phone won't mean much. Think about where you'd be if they never agreed. You still have proof they are wrong. You still have justification to sue them for FCRA and FDCPA. Their attorney could just argue that some staffer without authority made the agreement. Sue them for placing wrong information on CR when they had multiple opportunities to know it was wrong and disputed.

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Well I talked to them on the phone today for about an hour.

I told them that I would file suit if they did not agree to my terms.

Now I agree that I did owe direct tv for three months service and that the early termination fee I disagree with and will not pay so they agreed after a long discussion that they will send me a letter that states I only owe 179 dollars for the three months service and that they would close the account.

They also said that they would include in the letter that they would agree to delete the account from the CRA's. I told them I will pay it as soon as I get the letter, not until.

I really do not want to go to court at this time, but if they renig on what we agreed I will file suit.

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I receive their letter yesterday and they called me this morning.

The letter agreed to everything we discussed except where they agreed to delete from my credit report.

instead of saying they will delete the letter states "Our client will be informed of the above referenced payment and we will amend your credit report to reflect the resolution of this matter."

this is not acceptable, this simply means they could report it as paid collection and then I would have no recourse in court. I told them i will not accept this and I want a letter stating they will delete period.So they told me that since I wont agree they will continue collection attempts.

I will send them a letter stating that since they think they have my express consent to call my phone that I am revoking this consent as allowed in the TCPA. All communications will now have to be in written form. And that they will agree to delete from my credit file and never report again in any way.

Now the other issue is that Focus claims that they are not the ones reporting it is Direct TV but on my report is says Focus Receivables.

I do not think I will mention anything about FCRA or FDCPA violations, I don't want them to fix things on their side to try and weasel out of them.

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Why don't you just call them, recording the conversation, and let them hand themselves. Just ask them leading questions, get them to admit to what they told you was different than what they sent you, and then sue them or tell them to settle on your terms.

Indiana is a one party state (I would not care if it was a two party). I would never talk to a collection agency for an hour without the recorder running. I can't even imagine how many violations that could be rung up in an hour on the phone with a collection agency.

Get them making an oral contract/agreement with you and then breaking the agreement. That right there is an automatic FDCPA violation.

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well talking to them on the phone is next to impossible. They try their best not to let you talk and I have to constantly but in and say hey listen this is how it is. They always raise their voice to me.my biggest problem is I have an I phone and I have difficulty recording, I use a small tape recorder that I use for my class room lectures. It does not pick up their audio very well.

I am looking into some recording aps for the I phone but most of them cost a bit.But it may be a good investment.

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Not only fdcpa and fcra violations, I would argue they are guily of fraud.

I spoke with them on the phone and at least twice I gave them the tracking number for the equipment I sent back to Direct TV. They agreed that the equipment charges were not correct and they stated an amount which is half as much.

They originally said I owed 829 dollars, but after the equipment charge was taken off they say I owe 389 dollars.This was done at least a week before they reported to the cra's. My cr shows an 829 dollar balance.

The element of fraud which tends to stymie successful prosecution is the obligation to investigate. It falls on potential investors or customers to fully investigate a proposal before any money exchanges hands.I think I have performed due diligence in investigating the debt from my end and trying to reach a settlement. They have intentionally place a collection account for an amount they know is not correct, this is an attempt to get me to pay the bill

faster to get a negative off my cr.

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Actually I am typing up the suit now.

I am not too bad at typing a suit, I have typed several, but any ideas and court cases ya'll can give would sure help my research.

After the last conversation with them I am tired of dealing with it. Just gonna file suit.

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Only prob I am having now is the letter they sent me disappeared. Think wife tossed when she was cleaning things.

I check my cr this morning and focus changed things, they now report original amount owed as 829, and balance due 524.

Looks like they updated and corrected my cr so I dont think I have a case.

Edited by BTO429
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  • 2 weeks later...

Well still no correction to my cr after discussing this with them. At this point in time I am going to tell them the next time they call, and I will record it, that they no longer have my consent to use my phone number and that all communication will have to be in writing.I will also send a letter that says the same. I have told them not to call but of course i got the we will call as much as we want response.

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yes i sent the letter. For over a week now they have not called me.

My biggest issue though is they are still reporting on my cr. They have made a change. Its says the original balance 809, and the current balance s 529, they took off the 300 dollars for the equipment.

But still the fact remains that the balance on the account when I terminated service was 190 bucks the balance is for an early termination fee, which I do not agree with.

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I did take it up with direct tv, with focus on three way line, direct tv said they have the equipment, and that the remainder of the balance of the account was for two months service and early termination fees and i owe them 529 dollars.

When focus reports it say the original balance was 829 dollars and the balance is 529 dollars. I am not sure at this point that they are misrepresenting the character of the debt.

I say that because the original balance was 829 dollars and the balance they claim is now 529. But I refuse to pay for early termination fees and I do not agree with the amount for the termination fees. I terminated my one year contract in exactly one year, Direct tv says I terminated two days early so they can charge the termination fees.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Direct tv says they prorated at 20 dollars per month, But if i did terminate early it was only two or three months at the most.

I told them I agree that I owe the 190 dollars for three months service I did not pay but thats all I will pay.

But Focus still calls me every day and they are rude. I am recording calls but they say i have no right to do so. So now I don't tell them I am recording.

Some of you think they are misrepresenting the character of the debt. I don't see where they are. But if you can convince me of such I will make part of my counter claims. I know they will sue. What I hope to accomplish in court is agree to the 190 and argue that the early termination fees are excessive.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I havent posted anything on this subject for a while because the calls stopped.

I sent them a letter telling them any calls are inconvenient and to only contact me in writing.

After talking to them several times and writing several letters explaining that all I owe them is 155 dollars after reviewing the contract and telling them that their dates are wrong and i do not owe the early termination fees I would only pay for the two months of service that I owe them, the said that would not be accepted and they want the 829 dollars, I told them I would see them in court.

Today I got a phone call from them and they told me that they would offer me a settlement to close the case for 155 dollars. Imagine that. I told them how about I send you 155 dollars after you send me 1000 dollars for calling me after I notified you in writing not to do so, and I have the green card where you accepted the mail.

That didn't go over very good. So I told them I will send them a contract stating what I want in return for the settlement and if they sign and return it I will pay it.

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