Collection Agency Tactics

Discussion in 'Credit Talk' started by $wealth$, Aug 15, 2001.

  1. $wealth$

    $wealth$ Well-Known Member

    Can a collection agency or law firm contact your employer to verify employment and home address (regarding a debt) prior to having legal grounds, such as having a judgment?

    Is this legal?
  2. Crdt Dfnse

    Crdt Dfnse Well-Known Member

    In short, yes, such contacts can legally be done; but what purpose would be served other than litigation prep? Generally speaking (because as of this post some specifics are uncertain), employment and residence verifications are done as part of an asset evaluation, to determine whether or not a recovery lawsuit is appropriate. (Cost-effective to undertake against a debtor.) Other than for asset review, however, such contacts are truly a waste of the collectorâ??s time.

    Perhaps you could be more specific as to particulars of your situation? Doing so may allow more answers either from myself and/or others.
  3. Marie

    Marie Well-Known Member

    Perhaps they're trying to put pressure on you by calling work...

    You get embarassed enough.. you pay them to make them go away. Mafia tactics.

    How old is the debt? Can they still sue you? How big is it? More info will help us.

    1. You could always either send a validation request

    2. You can always just send a letter (certified rr) stating that your employer does not allow personal calls at work and that they are NOT to contact you in any way at work. That's per the FDCPA.

    3. You can send a general cease and desist (no contact whatsoever)

    IF you can still be sued... you may NOT want to send the general cease and desist (no contact whatsoever). It only leaves them to sue you.. or to pass it back to the original creditor.

    The first 2 you can send without much concern.

    If you send the validation and they don't validate they're required to suspend collection activities (except for suing)

    and the do not call at work has no real downside.
  4. $wealth$

    $wealth$ Well-Known Member

    Well, I just got a phone call today from a law firm specializing in debt collections.

    The person wanted to verify my employment and last known address. They were ask to fax over a request and because of my position, it was brought over to me. Can you imagine my shock.

    This is obviously from one of the last derogatory items on my Experian report that I have disputed and requested validation on. This activity must have prompted them to look more closely at this account and decided to pursue prior the expiration of the SOL.
  5. kbelle72

    kbelle72 Well-Known Member

    Don't take their calls. I challenged a not SOL expired collection. Surprise surprise, the day after they sign for it, my receptionist gets a rude call from a Scott who when asked what company he was with said "That's between me and Kelly". I told her to tell him I don't take calls unless I know the company. In my request for validation, I had asked them to only contact me through the mail regarding the validation, not to start harassing me. Considering they had never contacted me before, you would think they would be appreciative of the fact that I contacted them rather than be jerks.
  6. Crdt Dfnse

    Crdt Dfnse Well-Known Member

    Nope, wrongamundo! Simply because a collection agent contacts an employer during the validation period, doesn't automatically equate to a violation of FDCPA. That is, especially if the verifications are done for clarification purposes -- those relating to the validation of debt (which is sometimes required).

    For instance...

    Considering the name Smith is a very common one, multiple accounts featuring this name can cause confusion. Verifying certain file info, such as employment and residence, easily reconciles an internal systems conflict with common names. Granted such conflicts don't happen regularly, and I'm not aiming to defend the collector's actions per se; only open the doors to other distinctions. <wink>
  7. godaddyo

    godaddyo Well-Known Member

    If a collecor calls your employer and divulges any information about your debt, they are in violation. How can they call your employer and get information. Why would an employer give anyone personal information about there employees without their consent. If the collector calls, he will have to divulge to the employer who he is and his reason for calling. This doesnt make sense...
  8. Crdt Dfnse

    Crdt Dfnse Well-Known Member

    Trust me on this one (and you know how often I use that term, trust me?)â?¦ Itâ??s not all that difficult to verify information without disclosing the nature of the inquiry. Your confusion may rest in presupposing that a collection agent MUST disclose, which is hardly the case. BMO (by mail â?? including fax â?? only) verifications are most common when disclosure is sensitive, but direct checks can be facilitated without purpose disclosure as well. [;-)
  9. godaddyo

    godaddyo Well-Known Member

    I understand that someone could call your employer and ask questions, but how many employers or dept. of human resources will verify any of those questions? If you called my employer without stating your business, you would get nowhere. If you stated that you were collecting on a debt you would get NO WHERE. Why, because the do not give out info without the expressed consent of the employee. There are exceptions, but not for collection agencies. SO here is my queston, how do collection agencies approach employers to get this information, when most employers are not willing to divulge this information without written consent or by expressed verbal consent? By the way, "I actually do trust you" and that is why I am asking for clarification in this procedure...
  10. breeze

    breeze Well-Known Member

    LOL, now that is an endorsement!!

  11. Crdt Dfnse

    Crdt Dfnse Well-Known Member

    Iâ??d approximate the number is eight (8) out of ten (10) employers that will not resist verifications, to any degree, either BMO or verbally. Of those remaining about one (1) in twenty (20) will not resist strong, and half of these will not put up any sustained resistance. Few will resist to the point of non-productivity. Although keep in mind that itâ??s been about two (2) years since I last attempted to verify POE, so its entirely possible things could have changed since â?? but unlikely.

    When first asked the nature of the inquiry, my favorite line was to say: â??â?¦this concerns a personal financial matter.â? Most HR people know better than to ask personal information without consent of the employee, and assume the reason to concern a loan. But Iâ??ve had some press and require more info. My response was generally to take a line that, if THEY (the HR person) were applying for a loan? Theyâ??d appreciate discretion in such matters, making the need for diplomacy very understandable.

    Itâ??s a matter of finesse, yet Iâ??ve found very few employers will actually slam the door on verifications. I suppose you could say itâ??s all about stroking the tiger to make him purr, as opposed to scratching his belly causing a roar! Again, verifications arenâ??t difficult to obtain if one goes about it with finesse.
  12. breeze

    breeze Well-Known Member

    Any place I've ever worked, if they did that, they would get fired. Even the government has to send written request, and then all they will do is verify employment.

    When I managed the insurance company office, one of my agents asked me to verify some information informally for his mortgage company. I had to send it to corporate. I would have been fired if I had filled it out myself.

  13. Crdt Dfnse

    Crdt Dfnse Well-Known Member

    Yes, what youâ??ve stated has merit. Which is why the first question asked of an HR person (by a good collector) is, whether or not they verify BMO (By Mail Only â?? which includes faxes, generally). But youâ??d be surprised how many times HR people donâ??t push the BMO requirement, because I know I usually was. [;-)
  14. bbauer

    bbauer Banned


    I figured out how to get the &#209 or the &#241 into your name without your having to do the copy and paste routine. It's really simple and so when you post your name, you no longer have to do the Villase(copy and paste routine)or the VILLASE(COPY AND PASTE ROUTINE)OR.

    All you have to do is to type in Villase&#241or or VILLASE&#209OR and viola! all done.

    No more stupid copy and paste routines! Kinda neat, eh???

    I thought you might enjoy doing it that way more.
  15. Crdt Dfnse

    Crdt Dfnse Well-Known Member

    A Bit Off-topis, but...

    Great, Bill, glad you found joy in the accomplishment. Albeit, I donâ??t repetitively type (or cut & paste) my sig-line following each post. The CreditNet PHP system does that for each message, automatically. All one need do is type a sig-line once and, voila, the tag appears retroactively for all posts.
  16. godaddyo

    godaddyo Well-Known Member

    Re: A Bit Off-topis, but...

    BY the way this stuff is not off topic.

    Thanks for the info. I can see how this would work in your favor if you are trying to track pertinent details of their employment. When security is of more importance it would be tough, but I guess the average Joe employer may not put up much fuss. Every industry has there "tricks of the trade" heh?LoL

    Do you guys ever quit your jobs and become Private Investigators? What a great segue into a different career. LoL {;-)pinhead <(that's me)shhhhhh
  17. bbauer

    bbauer Banned

    Re: A Bit Off-topis, but...

    Yeah Anthony.
    I found that one out so long ago that I just about kicked the slats out of my baby crib with pure joy.

    Nice feature, isn't it?
  18. Crdt Dfnse

    Crdt Dfnse Well-Known Member

    Re: A Bit Off-topis, but...

    LOL, collections is a funny business (in a ha ha sense, as well as strange). Many line-collectors (average smile-n-dial Grunts), however, only stay in the business a few years then move to other endeavors. It can be a very stressful job mostly for collectors (as opposed to consumers), because one has to be â??onâ? as it were all day. Some can handle it, many more canâ??t.

    But youâ??re very perceptive, collections is one of the best training grounds for other professions that require keen thought processes: private investigations, sales, loan officer/origination funding, analytical pursuits, etc.

    BTWâ?¦ Youâ??re welcome; itâ??s my pleasure to be of help. [;-)
  19. bbauer

    bbauer Banned

    Re: A Bit Off-topis, but...

    BTW, what is used here is not PHP which is commonly used in conjunction with SQL and MySQL which are all data base languages. PHP uses the &#60&#63php&#63&#62 type conventions as is used in hypertext markup language otherwise known as HTML.

    What is used here is vb or visual basic conventions and they follow the &#91 &#93 conventions as in what we use here to produce color as in &#91color=red&#93which produces the color red in VB&#91&#47color&#93 which turns the color off.

    The only real problem with coloration in a message board forum is that if used indiscreetly it can light the place up like a christmas tree and makes the messages quite hard to read as PBM has previously pointed out. If only used to add emphasis or "illumination" to a word or phrase, it's not all that objectionable.

    Visual Basic can also come in very handy to produce almost any character in the ascii subset which ranges from ascii 32 through ascii 255

    All of the ascii codes and the letters and symbols they represent can be found by simply going to Yahoo or any of the other engines and typing ascii in the search box. One can then click on almost any of the links provided and one can then print out the entire table and it's characters so they will always be at one's fingertips for reference when needed.

    While one is perusing the search engines, one can also put PHP in the box and go to a multitude of websites which have tutorials on PHP and SQL and MYSQL and quickly see that they are all totally different and each has it's own syntax.

    All of that is likely more than most readers wanted to know in the first place, but since I started using color and other VB codes in messages and pulling little tricks like CREDITWRENCH&#153 in messages and many expressed great interest, I just thought I would take this opportunity to teach those who might be interested how to do those things and to at least learn enough to to be able to recognize the differences between HTML, Visual Basic or VB, PHP, SQL, MYSQL and maybe a few others as well if they are interested enough to do a bit of research.

    If I bored you to tears, please forgive me.
  20. Crdt Dfnse

    Crdt Dfnse Well-Known Member

    Waaaaay Off-topic...

    (In my best Austin Powers voice!)

    Yeah, psychedelics baaaaby!

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