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Very URGENT question


cajun_duck
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This has probably come up, but I really don't have the time to search. Last January my wife was sent to get an MRI by a doctor. The doctor failed to infomr us that he has a monetary investment into the mri place. Anyway, yesterday we get a letter in the mail stating that it went to collections. My wife just had major neck surgery, and I don't have the $400.00 to pay this off at the moment. They told her she has 10 minutes to set up 3 payments for the next 3 months or it is going to civil court. Can they do that? Is this legal? Need advice please. I beg it.

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I would think that you need to DV the collection agency--particularly if it's the dunning letter that states you have 30 days to respond before they continue collection efforts. During this time, the collection agency is not supposed to continue their attempts at collecting without verifying the information. Maybe it'd at least buy you some time.

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They actually have violated the FDCPA by "overshadowing" (making the "least sophisticated consumer" beleive they have to act immediately, when actually you have 30 days to dispute the debt) and "threatening to do something they may not do (take you to court).

If they call again, ask for their address where you can seen a summons for your suit against them for FDCPA violations...

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Let me add to this. My wife just got off of the phone with them. They said that this is the second letter they have sent. But it is the first we have seen. Does not say anything about 30 days. She tried setting up a $50.00 per month payment and they refused. This letter was actuall in our mailbox opened. They also list all of their licenses and they apparently do not have one for Louisiana. We got the letter yesterday and all of a sudden the "client" approved a suit.

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If it were me, I would absolutely refuse to speak with them on the phone. They are not your friend.

Hopefully more of the veterans on the board can give you outstanding advice like they've been giving me.

P.S. Save every piece of trash they send you including the envelopes.

Edited by Hopeful1
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There are only two reasons to speak to a CA on the phone:

1) To lure them into an FDCPA violation.

2) To screw with their minds.

1 is not necessary because they have already violated. 2 is something that you should never do if you don't have experience dealing with CAs and/or are worried (not hoping) that they might send the case off to an attorney.

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I think you should give serious thought to handling it like this:

1. Write the Collection Agency. Tell them that you are excersizing your rights under the FDCPA and directing them not to contact you again, and that you will contact the Original Creditor to resolve this matter.

2. Then you contact the MRI place and try to work out a payment plan that you can handle.

3. If they tell you that you need to go through the Collection Agency, you inform them that you have already directed the CA not to contact you anymore, so they are barred by law from communicating with you anymore, and that you prefer to work directly with them to resolve things.

Good luck.

DH

PS

4. If they continue to tell you to work with the CA, you start laying it on thick: The CA has not been acting in an aboveboard manner, they have failed to comply with the law to properly inform you of your rights, etc, and you REFUSE to work with them.

Edited by debtorshusband
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As for the so called 2nd letter routine, that has become very popular with JDBs/CAs. They cannot prove that you have received any other letters however than the one you admit to as they do not send them out CMRRR (the $5/letter to do CMRRR would ruin their business model). You therefore can still DV and mention in the DV letter that this is the first letter you received and that you are enforcing your rights under the FDCPA.

Since this is overshadowing, you already have the violation (all it takes is one) so if the do DV, you can either send a C&D letter or do nothing. Don't bother talking to them on the phone anymore as nothing good will come out of it. If they take you to court, you can counterclaim for the FDCPA violation (as well as deny you owe the CA the debt as the threshold for DV is low compared to the threshold for proving a debt in court). What will happen is that the attorney will try to settle with you and if you do not want a protracted court fight (some do, some don't), you simply do a quid pro quo settlement where you will dismiss if they will dismiss. If you are raring for a fight, then refuse to settle.

Finally, I would contact the MRI place and the doctor and inform them that due to their underhanded practices as well as that of the JDB/CA, you intend to take your business elsewhere. That may get them to sit up, take notice, and try to work with you. Also, I am betting the MRI practice still owns the debt because a JDB that has bought the debt should not need permission to sue.

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If they are not licesensed, I always file a complaint - and send them a copy...usually, if there are enough complaints, then the CA can usually be fined.

I personally have assisted Arizona with getting CAs fined for unlicensed activity. I also pity the one that tried to go after me for having them fined...

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I also pity the one that tried to go after me for having them fined...

Pending, or have they already contributed to your Latin American Retirement Fund?

Oh, and for the OP, from Russey v Rankin:

TCA has not disputed its unlicensed status. New Mexico law prohibits collection agencies, like Defendant TCA, from engaging in debt collection activities within the state without a license. N.M.S.A.1978 § 61-18A-5(A) (1987 Repl.Pamp.).[3] Moreover, this district has held that collection activity which violates state law violates the FDCPA. See Kolker, 750 F.Supp. at 472 (under New Mexico law, conduct constituted unauthorized practice of law in violation of FDCPA); see also Gaetano v. Payco of Wisconsin, Inc., 774 F.Supp. 1404, 1415 (D.Conn.1990) (faced with a parallel Connecticut state statute, district court held that unlicensed collection activity within a state violated various provisions of the FDCPA); Kuhn, 865 F.Supp. 1443 (same). Therefore, this Court finds that Defendant TCA violated 15 U.S.C. §§ 1692e, 1692e(5), 1692e(10) and 1692f by engaging in collection activity in this state without a license, and Plaintiff will be granted Summary Judgment on these claims.
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This has probably come up, but I really don't have the time to search. Last January my wife was sent to get an MRI by a doctor. The doctor failed to infomr us that he has a monetary investment into the mri place. Anyway, yesterday we get a letter in the mail stating that it went to collections. My wife just had major neck surgery, and I don't have the $400.00 to pay this off at the moment. They told her she has 10 minutes to set up 3 payments for the next 3 months or it is going to civil court. Can they do that? Is this legal? Need advice please. I beg it.

Too bad the tape recorder wasn't running to get that gem on tape. Making a threat they have no intention of carrying out. They threatened to sue you if she didn't make payment arrangements in the next ten minutes. Did you hear the stopwatch start? As 10:01 you have a FDCPA violation if they did NOT file suit.

If you can't deal with them get OFF the phones.

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There are only two reasons to speak to a CA on the phone:

1) To lure them into an FDCPA violation.

2) To screw with their minds.

1 is not necessary because they have already violated. 2 is something that you should never do if you don't have experience dealing with CAs and/or are worried (not hoping) that they might send the case off to an attorney.

LOL usagi, I used to mess with the Midlands India callers, I talked to them in German, figured they could understand me about as well as I could understand them 8-)

I also have Asset Acceptance calling here....for someone I dont know, someone who does not and never has lived here...I told them I dont know this person, they said they would remove my number yet they keep calling. so I put the phone up to the radio and give them a little music to brighten their day :mrgreen:

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so I put the phone up to the radio and give them a little music to brighten their day :mrgreen:

You must be trying for Santa's "Nice" list.

Robert_Nashville doesn't mind being on the "Naughty" list, and he uses an air horn...

But, as you are not the person they are looking for, that puts you in the category of "someone they are calling to obtain location information concerning the debtor," and if they call you more than once they are violating the FDCPA and you could consider suing. At the very least keep a log of their calls and then threaten a lawsuit to make them stop.

Regards,

DH

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Pending, or have they already contributed to your Latin American Retirement Fund?

Well they contributed... after the state went after them with a $3,500 civil money penalty and they were barred from applying for a collection license for 39 months.

About 6 weeks after that, I got a letter from a lawyer representing the CA, who demanded I pay the $3,500 - since I complained and got their client fined. They claimed my compliant damaged their client's ability to conduct business in AZ. My reply was their client's inability to fill out a simple application got them fined, if they wanted to pursue this, I'd make their client look really, really bad.

I showed that letter to the AZ AG, who I am sure sent them a letter, needless to say, I never heard from the firm...I'm still mulling a suit against the law firm for sending the letter in the first place.

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About 6 weeks after that, I got a letter from a lawyer representing the CA, who demanded I pay the $3,500 - since I complained and got their client fined. They claimed my compliant damaged their client's ability to conduct business in AZ.

Gee isnt that a sad story:ROFLMAO2:

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Hrmmmm,

Maybe the next time I get a speeding ticket after the police cracks down because of neighborhood complaints, I should send a letter to the complainer demanding that they pay my fine because of their complaint and that the speeding ticket on my license will hinder my ability to drive.

That is what it sounds like. I hope the AZ AG gives them the smack down for that one.

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