Fighting false debt collection calls

By Diane Walker - bio | email
Posted by Terry Alexander - email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – Debt collection complaints are coming into Call 12 at a faster pace and the reason may be scam debt collectors who use abusive tactics to get money from people who owe nothing. NBC12 has more on what to do, if you get a call.

Don't pay it; report it to the Federal Trade Commission if you're sure you don't owe the money. In this complaint, the debt collector would only accept Tony Marion's bank information for payment, and they cursed him.

"The recession is already hurting a lot of people so, what money you do have, don't give it to these people," said Tony Marion.

Tony Marion's suspicions were confirmed by police he says, and if you Google the number calling him, 209-390-9777, you get posted complaints about harassing collection calls from an agency that's raising suspicion on many levels.

"They started giving me a list of names of people that I put down as references which I never heard of. I don't have people in my family by that name," he said.

Tony supposedly owed an old $600 debt. Initially he thought he could possibly owe it. After all, they had his social security number and birth date. But his suspicions grew the more he talked. The debt collector pressed for his credit card and bank information stating that was the only way he could pay. They also refused to give a business street address.

"I told them I called the police department and police told me they were a legitimate scam artist and they commenced to cussing me out," Tony said.

Never give your banking information or post dated check to a collector and don't be intimated to pay. Try to verify whether you owe it first. The F.T.C. enforces the fair debt collections practices act which says, debt collectors cannot harass, make threats of violence or abuse. They cannot contact you before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. You can also sue a debt collector in state or federal court.

"Don't give it to these people," said Tony.

If you're suspicious 'or' they're abusive, notify the F.T.C. at 1-877-ftc-help, or go to it's website. You can also write a letter to the debt collector telling them to stop. It's illegal for them to contact you again, except to notify you that they intend to take action.

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