When you owe someone money, the last thing you probably want is to have to deal with are constant reminders about the debt. It seems, however, that some debt collectors think that if they use scare tactics or harassment, that debtors will magically be able to pay the debts. That usually isn’t the case. A recent story about one man who beat a debt collector might give people some hope who are dealing with creditors.
This case starts off with a debt buyer purchasing a file that contained this man’s information. A debt buyer usually buys information about accounts that are more than 180 days delinquent; however, the information usually includes the amount owed, person’s name and address. These charged-off debt accounts usually don’t come with solid documentation.
Debt buyers, such as Midland Funding, use shoddy collection systems. For example, consumers always have the right to request verification of a debt under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, but debt buyers don’t always provide that information.
The man in this case was being sued by Midland Funding for an old credit card debt from a JCPenny credit card. The company claimed the amount owed was $5,216. He knew that total was more than what he actually owed. Instead of paying that amount the company said he owed, he consulted with an attorney.
Upon reviewing the man’s case, the attorney discovered that the company was trying to collect fees that it didn’t have the right to collect. He challenged the company’s case by stating the company didn’t have documentation regarding fees.
When the attorney challenged the company’s claim, the company dropped the case. This isn’t unusual because the flimsy cases debt buyers have usually won’t hold up under a court’s examination.
This man’s case shows people who are being contacted by debt collectors can stand up to the debt collectors as long as they know their rights. Learning how to deal with creditor harassment can help Florida residents to ensure they aren’t taken advantage of by these debt buyers.
Source: Tampa Bay Times, “Yes, you can beat the debt collector” Danielle Douglas, May. 11, 2014