Getting Sued Over A Debt Already Paid

QUESTION: A collection agency says they’re going to sue me over a debt I already paid, I don’t know what to do.

I have a few emails of paid in full, but a couple of the companies didn’t send me anything, and when I tried to call them it says it’s no longer a working number.

ANSWER: First of all, I would suggest that you pull a copy of your credit bureau reports. You may obtain a free copy through www. AnnualCreditReport.com It is the only website that the Federal Trade Commission has approved of for a free credit report. You might find useful information on that website. Also, do you have old bank statements or cancelled checks to prove you paid?

If a third party debt collector is threatening to sue you on a debt that has been paid (whether you can prove it right now, OR NOT) then it seems your rights have been violated. I would suggest you contact a consumer rights attorney who has experience going after abusive debt collectors. They will probably want to look up this debt collector that is threatening to sue you. Specifically, they will want to see if this debt buyer is a common litigator; and also, they will want to find out if this debt collector has a surety bond on file with the Texas Secretary of State. If they do not, then this whole thing sounds like a scam- an illegal scam.

Keep in mind that the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act allows you to collect a statutory award, other damages, as well as your attorney fees. That is the reason why many consumer rights attorneys do not charge clients up front for their time. They can get paid for by the defendants. I strongly suggest you get your payment history together and call a consumer rights attorney licensed in Texas.

This information is provided for educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client relationship with Karni Law Firm until a contract is signed by the attorney and the client.

 

Reporting Credit Card Fraud

QUESTION: Do the local police bother to report a credit card fraud? I heard on another website that Federal Trade Commission rarely investigates a case that is less than $2000, right?

ANSWER: The Federal Trade Commission does not publish its criteria for actually enforcing consumer rights. In my experience, the FTC will only go after an individual or a company that has violated the rights of many consumers.

Generally, the local police may not have the resources to pursue fraud charges. Nevertheless, if you are the victim of any fraud or identity theft, you are encouraged to lodge your complaints with the authorities. I recommend that people complain to the following organizations:

1) your local police;
2) the Federal Trade Commission;
3) the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau;
4) the local Better Business Bureau; and
5) the Attorney General.

Ultimately, even if none of these organizations will do anything proactive for you, you will have a copy of the reports (or complaints) that you will need to send back to the credit card company and/or the credit bureaus to clear your name.

If the police report does not satisfy the credit card company, you might want to go one step further with an affidavit. Depending on the extent of damage to you, you may want to contact a consumer rights attorney to assist in drafting your affidavit.

This information is provided for educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client relationship with Karni Law Firm until a contract is signed by the attorney and the client.