Every year, many debt collection companies improperly attempt to collect debts. Either the person never owed the debt, or the debt is so old, it’s uncollectible. Nevertheless, there is a lot of money in this industry, and collection companies are buying the debt in hopes that their investments will pay off. Some of the largest debt buying companies are:
If you go to some of these sites, you will see that these companies represent themselves as consumer friendly and “help[ing] people recover from financial difficulty and turn toward a path of economic empowerment.” However, these companies are in the business of “acquiring and collecting nonperforming loans.” In other words, their main goals are to buy bad debt cheap and collect the full amount, or at least a good return on their investment.
While some of these methods may be handled ethically and responsibly, many are not. There are alleged debts which are so old that the statute of limitations would prevent collection on them. They employ collectors who use unscrupulous tactics to collect debts which include, but are not limited to: threats, calling employers, legal action, etc. Many times, the debt buyers cannot prove their case in court because they don’t have the proper documentation or a witness to testify about what’s owed.
Below is a good and humorous review of some of the issues with this industry. While there are many people who owe legitimate debts, there are also many people who are being bombarded with telephone calls and debt collection activity on debts which aren’t even owed. Many of these activities by debt collectors violate various federal and state laws such as the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and Fair Credit Reporting Act.
If you have been the victim of some of these activities, seek legal counsel in order to protect yourself and your financial well-being.