Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Are There Any "Legitimate" Debt Collection Agencies?

For the third time since retaining me, a client came to meet with me because she received another collection notice in the mail on a debt she is trying to dispute. It’s amazing to see the way it just keeps going on for her. The first time, we wrote a letter to the company that was attempting to collect the debt and requested the documents evidencing the debt. We never heard back.

Six weeks after that, she received another notice about the debt, this time from a different debt collection company that was supposedly now going to be collecting the debt. Same drill as before, sent the second company a letter, including a copy of the prior letter, and requested the documents evidencing the debt. The holidays came and went, and no response or documents appeared.

And on to the new year, when last week my client received another notice, this time from a third debt collection company that, like those before it, was now going to be the company collecting the debt. A quick web search reveals that there are many folks out there who believe this company is a scam and when you Google their address, you can see why. Across the street from an upstate airport and with no web presence, it would be hard to find the office in a car.

Even more fun arrives when you call the telephone number on the notice and attempt to find out their fax number so you can send them a letter. They dig in deep on the telephone, allowing only for their address to send a payment and offering to add your telephone number to their database (because, of course, I would love them to be calling me instead). In addition, they don’t seem to have a legal department or someone else I can speak to about the issue.

All in all, it’s a little too suspicious that if the debt was valid, it would be assigned to a ghost of a company to collect it.

For more information on defending yourself against these scams or to schedule a consultation, please call the office (718.568.0221) or visit my website (AndrewMAyers.com) for more information.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Hot Tempers and Cold Temperatures

The beginning of the year has brought an influx of new cases and it seems like I have been spending a lot of time in court recently. As the weather gets colder here in New York, it seems that people are getting hotter under the collar than ever before. This week I’ve seen people fighting over why they should even obey a court order from two years ago, why they need to follow the rules of appellate procedure and why a doctor should be responsible for botching a very basic medical procedure.

The Courts seem to be busier than ever and are happy to remind us all of that fact at every turn. A clerk on Monday repeatedly announced to the Court that she had been out of the office on Friday and had 8 emails to respond to! I wish I was lucky enough to have only 8 emails in my inbox, but alas, I am not that lucky. My inbox is filling up with the wonderful pay day loan scammers who seem to enjoy responding to my prior blog posts on the subject and are trying to convince me that their product, and the 4,000% interest that they will charge me, are beneficial to people and that they would never abuse their customers. You can insert my eye roll here.

As they year begins, and the fiscal cliff discussions wind down, it’s a good time to move forward, maybe even with an optimistic view, and prepare for the upcoming year.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, please call my office (718.568.0221) or visit my website (AndrewMAyers.com)