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3rd party colllections for state taxes


yomama...isnicelady
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I got an odd letter a few months ago attempting to collect taxes from 2008 from a debt collection company. I thought 'State and federal agencies don't hire debt collectors - they bother people themselves' I told them to validate the debt over the phone.

 

I got a letter a few weeks ago (3+ months after initial contact) that a judgment was entered in state court in NJ. I MIGHT have gotten a letter about judgement or court dates, but I doubt it. The judgment notice in on NJ State letterhead - and then signed by the debt collectors. Thoroughly bizarre to me.

 

Anyhow, I would like to settle the tax liability, by any means really - even if I have to pay it (rather not of course). The debt is valid (since new jersey gave a tax credit, then changed the law and made the refund in the first year a loan that needed to be repaid the next year - bastards). I don't really know what to do with a judgment. I could post a copy of the letter, with important things greyed out I suppose. Lemme know if that would be helpful.

 

Here is a link to their area on the NJ Treasury website:

http://www.state.nj.us/treasury/taxation/PioneerCreditRecoveryWebNotice.shtml

 

I was given that URL AFTER the judgment letter came. They seem to be SUPER lazy about everything - they don't even try to be mean - they have the law and state on their side apparently - resistance is futile, no need to be mean.

 

Other pertinents - I owe 10k + in Federal taxes and am about to do an Offer In Compromise

I filed and got out of bankruptcy earlier this year

The taxes are for NJ 2008, about $2500 and I live in another state now.

 

So what can I or should I do? Usually when a collection agency gets a debt, they cannot answer requests for validation and so on - and that is enough. But they correspond on State letterhead - hard to see where they stop and the state begins. I will say I have made several calls to the state, and there is a recorded message saying they cannot answer my call, and I should try later (thank you NJ - good thing your took my taxes). And I sent NJ a requesst for a payment plan a month or so before the Judgement, and there was no response, and Pioneer Debt recovery knows nothing about that request, and a rep from Pioneer says they are usually forwarded such correspondence (not sent certified mail... sorry).

 

Anyhow - this is an odd duck. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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Contact a consumer attorney as they cannot get a judgment without suing you.  You should be able to find a copy of the judgment on the court website and if you can't then they have grossly mischaracterized the status of this debt and that is a FDCPA violation and you can sue them.  If they did get a judgment without serving you so you can defend yourself that is also a violation.  

 

Go to www.naca.net and find a consumer attorney in your state or NJ and start looking into the violations of Federal law this collection agency may have committed.

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Clydesmom, on 09 Oct 2014 - 09:36 AM, said:

Contact a consumer attorney as they cannot get a judgment without suing you.  You should be able to find a copy of the judgment on the court website and if you can't then they have grossly mischaracterized the status of this debt and that is a FDCPA violation and you can sue them.  If they did get a judgment without serving you so you can defend yourself that is also a violation.  

 

Go to www.naca.net and find a consumer attorney in your state or NJ and start looking into the violations of Federal law this collection agency may have committed.

****************************************************************************

 

Thanks for the reply!!

 

I have been looking on the NJ Courts website, and cannot find a record of the judgment - I will need to look a lot, as NJ is known for the impenetrable beurocracy, not user-friendliness. Looking here:

https://njcourts.judiciary.state.nj.us/web15/JudgmentWeb/jsp/judgmentSearch.faces

 

I have sample letters available for sending to them, I may also ask the collection company for more details (docket number is apparently incomplete on the letter I have, as the search by Docket# option is asking for things not in the docket# on the letter)

 

The letter I have says

"TAKE NOTICE, Judgment has been entered in the Superior Court of New Jersey under date of xx/xx/2014 in the above entitled action, in the amount of $ xxxxx. Additional penalty and interest, plus costs of collection will accrue pursuant to NJSA 54:49-1 et seq. and/or NJSA 54A:9-1 et seq.

Take further notice that said Judgment, if not satisfied, may be executed upon without further notice to the defendant.

Any remittance in payment of this Judgment should be in guaranteed funds, and any inquiries relative thereto, should be directed to the section indicated below.

A personal visit is not necessary. However, anyone desiring to discuss this matter further MUST call or write  BEFOREHAND to arrange for an appointment by contacting the person whose name appears below"

 

I can say that the amount in the letter is not the same as the NJ Tax website amount - it is off by about $12. The Collection letter from 2 weeks ago says I owe about $12 more than the state of NJ website does today.

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I just was looking on the website:

http://www.naca.net/issues/debt-collection-abuse

 

and found this:

False statements. Debt collectors may not lie when they are trying to collect a debt. For example, they may not:

  • falsely claim that they are attorneys or government representatives;
  • falsely claim that you have committed a crime;
  • falsely represent that they operate or work for a credit reporting company;
  • misrepresent the amount you owe;
  • indicate that papers they send you are legal forms if they aren’t; or
  • indicate that papers they send to you aren’t legal forms if they are.

 

So I printed the webpage from the NJ tax site that gives a different amount than this Pioneer company. with a date on the bottom, and the URL accross the top to shw where it came from and when.

 

Hopefully I can use it to stick it to the man later.

 

How happy about this should I be? My first thought when I saw a third party collecting tax debts was 'what the...!?!?' then I quickly realized they consistently are sloppy and make mistakes, making a move against them musch easier than a government agency. As long as they are not the same somehow, like when they print off collection letters on state stationary.

 

I am still lookin for independant verification of an actual judgement from the State, maybe it will be a strike 2....

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A friend suggested I look At the OPRA website:

http://www.nj.gov/opra/

It is apparently the one stop shop for public records in NJ. I am just trying to figure out which department handles Supreme Court judgments on tax debt -

Treasury

Taxation

Courts

Or some other agency?

Still sorting this out. Thanks again for the reply again

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First check the Supreme Court docket for the date they claim the judgment was entered and see if it is real.  I am highly suspicious of their use of state letterhead. 

 

You can also send them a DV.  By law they must send you a copy of the actual judgment from the court.  Specifically request this.  If they do not send it they are in violation of the FCDPA.  

 

None of this will wipe out your tax debt but it will get this debt collector in a world of trouble.  A federal lawsuit against them could also generate enough money to pay off NJ.

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First check the Supreme Court docket for the date they claim the judgment was entered and see if it is real.  I am highly suspicious of their use of state letterhead. 

 

You can also send them a DV.  By law they must send you a copy of the actual judgment from the court.  Specifically request this.  If they do not send it they are in violation of the FCDPA.  

 

None of this will wipe out your tax debt but it will get this debt collector in a world of trouble.  A federal lawsuit against them could also generate enough money to pay off NJ.

 

Sorry - what's a DV?

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DV = Debt Validation letter

 

Another thought:  The state of VA tried this crap with me.  I haven't lived there in almost two decades but suddenly out of the blue they tried to claim I owed taxes from 1996.  I called a tax attorney in VA and asked what to do and he laughed.  He stated that they were doing this to a LOT of former residents knowing they likely did not have the records to support a defense.  He suggested I send a terse letter stating a laches defense i.e. they waited to long to pursue the claim and therefore prejudiced me from an adequate defense.  They backed down.

 

I would call a NJ tax attorney (mine spoke to me on the phone for free) and run this collection agency and this tactic by them and ask their suggestion.

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Sorry - what's a DV?

Ah - a Demand for Verification - how does this look?:

 

Be advised that this a notice sent pursuant to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 USC 1692g Sec. 809  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.

It is your obligation to provide the following:

  • 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;
  • Complete payment history, the requirement of which has been established via Spears v Brennan 745 N.E.2d 862; 2001 Ind. App. LEXIS 509; 
  • Agreement that bears the signature of the alleged debtor wherein he agreed to pay the original creditor;
  • Provide a verification or copy of any judgment if applicable;
  • 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
  • Letter of sale or assignment from the original creditor to your company. (Agreement with your client that grants you the authority to collect on this alleged debt.) Coppola v. Arrow Financial Services, 302CV577, 2002 WL 32173704(D.Conn., Oct. 29, 2002) – Information relating to the purchase of a bad debt is not proprietary or burdensome. Debtor must phrase their request clearly to obtain: The source of a debt and the amount a bad debt buyer paid for plaintiff’s debt, how amount sought was calculated, where in issue a list of reports to credit bureaus, and documents conferring authority on defendant to collect debt.
  • Intimate knowledge of the creation of the debt by you, the collection agency

 

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) or any other credit bureau, 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, my cell phone, 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. If any future contact to me is made, it must be the information outlined above. This is an attempt to correct your records, any information obtained shall be used for that purpose.

Best Regards,

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NO. NO. NO. NO. NO. NO. NO. NO. NO. 

 

 

Ah - a Demand for Verification - how does this look?:

 

Like you cut and pasted that letter from this site or the internet.  MOST of it is inaccurate.

 

NOTHING in the FDCPA requires they send you anything other than the name/address of the original creditor and the amount you owe.  In your case because they are claiming they have a judgment by law they would also have to send you a copy of the actual judgment NOT that crap they typed up on fake letterhead.

 

  • 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;
  • Complete payment history, the requirement of which has been established via Spears v Brennan 745 N.E.2d 862; 2001 Ind. App. LEXIS 509; 
  • Agreement that bears the signature of the alleged debtor wherein he agreed to pay the original creditor;
  • Provide me with your license numbers and Registered Agent
  • Letter of sale or assignment from the original creditor to your company. (Agreement with your client that grants you the authority to collect on this alleged debt.) Coppola v. Arrow Financial Services, 302CV577, 2002 WL 32173704(D.Conn., Oct. 29, 2002) – Information relating to the purchase of a bad debt is not proprietary or burdensome. Debtor must phrase their request clearly to obtain: The source of a debt and the amount a bad debt buyer paid for plaintiff’s debt, how amount sought was calculated, where in issue a list of reports to credit bureaus, and documents conferring authority on defendant to collect debt.
  • Intimate knowledge of the creation of the debt by you, the collection agency

 

They do not have to provide ANY of that unless they actually do sue you.  It is not required for DV at all.

 
  • Provide a verification or copy of any judgment if applicable;

 

They DO have to provide this as they have claimed in that letter they have a judgment.

 
  • Prove the Statute of Limitations has not expired on this account
  • Show me that you are licensed to collect in my state

 

There is NO SOL on taxes.  They can collect forever on a debt to the government.

 

You KNOW they are licensed in NJ as there is a link on the state website indicating they are contracted to collect taxes for the state.  Besides not all states require licensure to collect.

 

The rest of the letter is PURE CRAP.

 

Simply send a letter requesting a copy of the judgment FROM THE COURT, not on letterhead, not a statement a COPY OF THE ACTUAL JUDGMENT and send it CMRR.  Make sure to indicate you want the entire case number and will be having an attorney review the case file for proper service since you were never served.

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The rest of the letter is PURE CRAP.

 

Simply send a letter requesting a copy of the judgment FROM THE COURT, not on letterhead, not a statement a COPY OF THE ACTUAL JUDGMENT and send it CMRR.  Make sure to indicate you want the entire case number and will be having an attorney review the case file for proper service since you were never served.

 

(sigh) I know it is, But when it comes to sticking it to the a debt collector - it is the thought that counts isn't it? ;-)

 

I was hoping to make some drone in a cubicle wet their pants - after all it is the simple pleasures in life that make living worth while. hehe Besides, in my thoroughly uneducated , and rather vindicitve opinion (maybe you can help with the uneducated part) that It seems best to make complying with a request as hard as possible. Make them figure out there is no statute of limitations and that they don't need to provide proof of licensure for NEBRASKA (my state). But in this arena, what I do not know can definitely hurt me, so it is good to get some other eyes on this. Thanks thanks thanks for the assistance!!

 

Also,I am hoping the thread is searchable, that is why I took the time to type out the letter's contents - then it would get a hit on a google search for the next poor guy geting pushed around.

 

What is CMRR? Certified Mail Return Receipt? - I should send the request CMRR. I got it.

 

I looked up a few attourneys in NJ, I will try to call one tomorrow.

 

Here is the adjusted letter - without all the gleefully unnecessary items (sigh)

***********************************************************************************************************************

Be advised that this a notice sent pursuant to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 USC 1692g Sec. 809  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.

It is your obligation to provide the following:

 

Verification of the judgement you claim to have against me, as well as a copy of the actual judgement from the court with a complete case number ,name of the judge, docket number, and name of the case. Not a summary of it on your letterhead.

 

Also proof that you are authorized to collect this debt in behalf of the state of NJ.

 

I will be having an attorney review the case as I was never properly served notice

 

Best Regards,

 

********************************************************************************************************************

 

I just found the superior court site, and in their forms they ask for this information - Judge's name, docket number, case number, and several other unnaplicable items (whch I do not have as it was not on the collection letter) This is where I got these items from. I also submitted my own requests for the judgement.

 

Also, it is still bizarre that they are collecting a debt for a govenment, so I threw the other part in there. I am curious after all.

 

I would really like to see them try to show licensure for NE, you sure I can't ask for that?

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(sigh) I know it is, But when it comes to sticking it to the a debt collector - it is the thought that counts isn't it? ;-)

 

I was hoping to make some drone in a cubicle wet their pants - after all it is the simple pleasures in life that make living worth while. hehe 

 

That letter is SO over used and full of errors all it does is make the creditor LAUGH and hard.  They might wet their pants but not for the reason you believe.  Only from laughing too hard at the dumb consumer who knows how to use cut and paste and nothing about the actual FDCPA.

 

Here is the adjusted letter - without all the gleefully unnecessary items (sigh)

***********************************************************************************************************************

Be advised that this a notice sent pursuant to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 USC 1692g Sec. 809  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.

It is your obligation to provide the following:

 

Verification of the judgement you claim to have against me, as well as a copy of the actual judgement from the court with a complete case number ,name of the judge, docket number, and name of the case. Not a summary of it on your letterhead.

 

Also proof that you are authorized to collect this debt in behalf of the state of NJ.

 

I will be having an attorney review the case as I was never properly served notice

 

Best Regards,

 

Close but still no banana.

 

Take out this crap:

 

Be advised that this a notice sent pursuant to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 USC 1692g Sec. 809  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.

 
They are not required to do any of that and it is unnecessary.
 
Try this:
 
Dear CA:
 
I am in receipt of your letter dated (xx-xx-2014) stating you have obtained a judgment against me in NJ (name of Court).  Pursuant to the FDCPA I am requesting validation and that you provide me a copy of the judgment FROM THE COURT including the entire docket number, court of record, and date of judgment.
 
I am requesting this information for review by my attorney as I was never served by your company for any lawsuit and this claim of judgment may be the source of several violations of the FDCPA and currently we are evaluating pursuing action against you in Federal Court.
 
Sincerely, 
 
Educated Consumer
 

Also, it is still bizarre that they are collecting a debt for a govenment, so I threw the other part in there. I am curious after all.

 

I would really like to see them try to show licensure for NE, you sure I can't ask for that?

 

Is is not bizarre.  Many states have farmed out collecting past due taxes because they do not have the time or the budget to do it.  They simply enter into an agreement where the collection agency gets a percentage of what they collect.   You do NOT need to get into this as you already know they are legally contracted by the state.  Waste of time and makes you look foolish.

 

ONE MORE TIME:  they do not have to show you licensure.  Settle down and focus.  Get them to send a copy of this judgment, find a consumer attorney and sue them in federal court generating enough money to pay off NJ directly and make them GO AWAY.  That is your best revenge.

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That letter is SO over used and full of errors all it does is make the creditor LAUGH and hard.  They might wet their pants but not for the reason you believe.  Only from laughing too hard at the dumb consumer who knows how to use cut and paste and nothing about the actual FDCPA.

 

ONE MORE TIME:  they do not have to show you licensure.  Settle down and focus.  Get them to send a copy of this judgment, find a consumer attorney and sue them in federal court generating enough money to pay off NJ directly and make them GO AWAY.  That is your best revenge.

 

clydesmama is a nice lady (I hope you are a lady, or the compliment will lose a bit of its value...) 

 

Thanks for the feedback - I can't argue with the conclusions drawn, it would be nice to get the collections agency to foot the bill.

 

For others out there in a similar position, Here is where I am looking for the Judgement in Superior court (VERY hard to find):

 

http://www.judiciary.state.nj.us/pressrel/2012/pr120411a.htm

https://njcourts.judiciary.state.nj.us/web15/JudgmentWeb/jsp/judgmentCaptcha.faces

 

There you can search by name, docket #, and Judgement #. I have not found my case there searching with any of the info I have available. 

 

Also Here:

http://www.judiciary.state.nj.us/superior/faq_judg.htm

links to Here:

http://www.judiciary.state.nj.us/superior/faq_judg.htm

Which has a Request Form:

http://www.judiciary.state.nj.us/forms/10200_records_req.pdf

To be emailed to the address on the previous page. I attached the form, in case links break. I have sent the request already to them. I will call later, as the website says they cannot email some things, and what those things are is not really clear. 

 

That along with the typed copy of the letter I received when the collectors contacted me that I put in an earlier post should be helpful to others. 

 

I will say that I got the response letter from a relative (who may have copied it from the internet, I dunno) as it was used to good effect when disputing a $40,000 water bill (long story) It does seem tailor made for an entirely different set of circumstances, as none of the players involved then were a state government looking for taxes. Knowing to what extent it is applicable here is super helpful. Maybe it will help someone else, somewhere else. 

 

Anything I can do to stick it to bill collectors. 

 

I will also be calling a tax lawyer, and then maybe also a naca attorney ( http://www.naca.net/find-attorney ), as it seems likely that the tax guy may not know much about collections fraud (I could be wrong), and the naca guy may find the tax guys ideas helpful. 

 

I just need to wait for those businesses to open. 

 

Thanks again or the responses!!

10200_records_req.pdf

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@yomama...isnicelady One of the best known consumer lawyers in NJ is Philip Stern.  You can Google his website.  

 

I called him, he said he cannot help - he says I need a tax accountant. The issue seems to be the marriage of abusive collection practices (Consumer Debt Law) and a state tax liability (Tax Law).

 

He did recommend another site where Lawyers look at stuff and reply to questions, as it may lead to getting hooked up with a lawyer.

 

http://www.avvo.com/

 

So I am posting there, as I wait for my Return Receipted letters and inquiries with various state agencies to come back.

 

thanks for the suggestion, I am gonna keep on keepin on. 

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  • 4 weeks later...

I did not see where anyone mentioned the numbers showing on the letter received. If this letter is "real", it should have numbers, letters, or a combination of each, that refers to that

specific case. Most always, they will be under the date, or, at the least, in the upper right or left area. If so, go to the website of the court stated, and search. That number must

match the case, you. If none exists, it is a phony. Many debt buyers use this tactic. they will refer to a number, causing you to believe you are being sued, or send what you believe is a summons, or legal paper, but, when you call the court, nothing. Then, next letter, if not on the one prior, you will find that exact same number references their account number. All

courts have this access.

As to states assigning debts to third party collectors, this began in the late 90's. Supposedly, they found it more cost effective to assign than pay their own to collect. And, yes, in

most states there is not a SOL on taxes. BUT, do read the whole thing, all of it. Some states, Oregon is one, has a section that says that if a certain period of time has lapsed, the debt

will be forgiven. And, no, they won't tell you this. Helped a friend with this some years ago. And, yes, you must read the whole thing as they do update or change things, when they want, not when they should.

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