FDCPA Attorney

Discussion in 'Credit Talk' started by roni, Oct 13, 2001.

  1. roni

    roni Well-Known Member


    August 1999
    5 Debtorsâ?? Attorneys To Watch
    Collector Terminator


    Stewart Miller is on a crusade to protect debtors against sinister and abusive collectors. His mission has cost collections agencies thousands of dollars and even forced several shops to close their doors. Heâ??s not out to get collectors per se, he claims, but to stop agencies that violate the FDCPA. â??In fair debt cases you have some collections agencies that try to cross a minefield, but sooner or later they will get blown up,â? he says.

    Miller aims to ensure that his clients are not among the casualties. For more than a decade, he has been in hot pursuit of collectors who harm debtors, who he calls munchkins â??because they are little people badly treated by those using the force of collections.â?

    The Miller & Miller Firm PLLC
    P.O. Box 7103
    Dallas, Texas 75209-7103
    Voice: 214 352-5757
    Fax: 214 352-1328
    Stewart Ransom Miller, Lawyer

    Claim to Fame: Ranked by the American Collections Association as the Texas lawyer most likely to sue its members for FDCPA violations.

    Just how gross does the violation have to be for Miller to file an FDCPA lawsuit? He says that depends on the extent of harm, citing as an example the case of a person who is about to lose his or her home and being badgered by collectors. â??You also start to get a flavor for those who knowingly violate the act,â? he says. He and the Miller firm are well known in collections industry circles. The American Collectors Association once labeled him as the Texas attorney most likely to sue its members.

    Miller doesnâ??t hide his distaste for frequent FDCPA violators, but he reserves some of his most potent venom for distressed-debt buyers who think they donâ??t have to adhere to fair debt practices â?? he calls them â??scavengers.â? Miller currently is gearing up to sue a major â??scavengerâ? for repackaging purchased debt and allegedly enticing debtors with a new line of credit, on the condition they repay old debts for which the statute of limitations has expired.

    Collectors be forewarned: This lawyerâ??s bite can be as bad as his bark or worse. In 1995, for example, he drove Southwest Collection in Dallas out of business. â??These guys ran shabby operations,â? he says. â??Debtors that called in with speech impediments would be broadcast on the overhead speakers. They would lie to people, intimate people, and steal money from their creditors.â? Miller filed a class action lawsuit against the agency and won, the business collapsed, and the owner went into another line of business.

    Miller is not a typical, buttoned-down attorney. At 54, he sports a ponytail and diamond earring, and can be seen zipping around town in a Mustang convertible. But when it comes to chasing down FDCPA violators, heâ??s all business. â??He doesnâ??t look like your typical lawyer and heâ??s quite a character,â? says Manuel H. Newburger, an Austin, Texas, attorney specializing in FDCPA cases for creditors and collections professionals. â??But donâ??t let that fool you. Heâ??s one of the top FDCPA lawyers in the country and well regarded among his peers.â?

    That respect stems in part from Millerâ??s practice of convincing clients not to file bankruptcy â?? unlike other attorneys who, collectors claim, do just the opposite.

    â??Although Iâ??m board certified,â? he says, â??I donâ??t let my people file.â?

    Ironically, Miller discovered the collections industry the same way many debt buyers did â?? during the savings and loan crisis in the 1980s. He worked in commercial real estate law and served as outside general counsel for Texas-based Richardson Savings.

    When the S&L crisis hit, he found himself abruptly thrust into bankruptcy law. â??It was in bankruptcy that I came across debt collectors,â? he says.

    Millerâ??s aggressive stance against FDCPA violators sometimes brings him acknowledgement from unexpected sources. For example, after he won a jury verdict in one case, the juryâ??s foreman raised his fist in a salute as Miller was leaving the courtroom. â??I donâ??t know what that meant,â? Miller says. A sign of gratitude, perhaps, for defending another munchkin.

    Big-Business Litigator

    The Bankrupt Debtor's Protector

    A Class Act

    Debtor's FDCPA Guru
  2. bbauer

    bbauer Banned

    That's a tremendously helpful post, Bkev.

    That guy sure does have a monstrous website. I turned my spider loose on it and it really took it a while to spider the entire site. My spider can usually do most any website in a matter of seconds and come up with every link on it, but his took almost 3 minutes to spider.

    We will totally analyze every link on it to see what all is there, but that probably won't get completed until sometime tomorrow morning even though we will be working on it all night
    We have already found several interesting facts about his site including the fact that he probably has every webpage from Collections World copied over to his site and most likely every edition of Collections world ever put out in it's entirety.

    He has also apparently gone out and snagged a copy of all of several more websites and all of their webpages and copied them over to his site as well. We also know that he either speaks Spanish himself or has someone in his employ who does read, write and speak the language.
    We know that because he also seems to have an extremely large collection of Spanish legal material on his website although none of it that we have found so far deals with anything south of the border, so he probably has a pretty fair number of Hispanic clients that he deals with in his practice. Hard to tell what else my investigative team will come up with, but it's likely to be pretty interesting to say the least. Of course, we will also spider all of the webpages he has on his system so we can also see what else we come up with that might be interesting.

    Thanks for the nice post, Bkev.
  3. bbauer

    bbauer Banned

    Our final report is over 600K in size.
    We find that he has well over 1500 links on his site that are valid and another 384 that are broken links.

    What's interesting indeed is the fact that his website is listed as an official website of Collections World magazine!!!! That's information that was found by our spider, not by the investigative team. So it's mechanically harvested information, and not produced by us.

    If that is indeed so, then it's no wonder that he has so much material from Collections World Magazine on it.

    Now that's real strange, isn't it?

    That makes it appear,at least on the surface of it that we have a lawyer who might in fact work for or might have some "official" connection to Collections World Magazine supposedly out sueing the pants off of Collections World Magazine's customers.

    Now then, of course, that's just early results conjecture and obviously may not have a single grain of truth in it. But there certainly is more than enough evidence there to raise the eyebrows and at least somewhat tend to support the theory.

    But let's examine the evidence. The spider's report on the website is over 600 K in size. Once you take out the 328 broken links and redirects on the site, you come up with 328 K of links left, the vast majority of which seem to be copies of Collections World back issues and Collections World webpages, some of which are blank when you click on them indicating that they may be templates for future issues of Collections World Magazine, although that's obviously just conjecture too, since they also could be templates which are filled in with CGI or Java or other scripting languages. We will find that out too as our investigations proceed.

    And the spider plainly printed out the information in it's report that the site is a Collections World Magazine website.

    I've uploaded a couple of copies of the spider's report to the internet so it won't get lost. This one is really interesting and we will just have to see what the final analysis and report of the investigative team turns out to be. Then we will know the rest of the story.
  4. roni

    roni Well-Known Member

    When the analysis is finished........... Whatever.

    It's not surprise since it's an article clipped from the Collections World's corporate website that was published in August 1999's Collections & Credit Risk. Didn't you see the copy of the magazine cover in the link?

    A better attorney is Randolph Bragg, but the link to profile article http://www.ccr.faulknergray.com/augart2e.htm is one of the ones broken.
  5. bbauer

    bbauer Banned

    I didn't, but investigations brought it to my attention when I came into the office this A.M.

    Thanks for the heads up, though.

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