Debt collector gets fined for bad behavior

My advice on debt collectors is not to do business with them.  They are not to be trusted.  Send them a “cease and desist” letter  and report them to the The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) if they contact you again.

The FTC got more than 165,000 complaints against debt collectors last year and they have begun to take some action.  According to the Wall Street Journal, they fined Acceptance Capital Corporation $2.5 million for coercing borrowers into paying debts they did not owe!

Acceptance Capital is one of those companies that buys old debt for a few pennies on the dollar and starts trying to collect it.  Much of this debt it turns out is beyond the statute of limitations (which varies by state, ranging from two to ten years), which means that the borrower no longer owes it.  Courts will not enforce it.

Acceptance Capital did not, it seems, let the borrowers know that the debt was beyond the statute of limitations and they could not enforce it in court.  Not only that, but they did not tell borrowers that if they made a payment the clock would start ticking again, allowing collectors to use the courts.

Do not pay debts you do not owe.  Do not deal with debt collectors.  If you want to pay your debts go to the original creditor or do a debt management plan with a Consumer Credit Counseling Service.

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