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kitty44 Donating Member (96 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:03 PM
Original message
Credit Card collection tactics
I just had a really weird experience!

I had a credit card from a long time ago that I never used and completely forgot about. Apparently, there was some automatic withdrawal on it up until about last May or something (Gold's Gym?) - anyway, I never got a bill, and I completely forgot about it.

Well, this credit collection company just called me - NCO - obviously, from India - called me at WORK to tell me I needed to give them my bank routing number NOW so I could have this black mark removed from my credit record.

Well, I checked Equifax and it was legitimate, but I was surprised by the ATTACK DOG nature of this caller. I insisted that I get something in writing and wanted to send them a check. I asked that they fax over something. They kept saying NO. They needed a bank account or credit card # and I had to pay now. The amount was only for $320 or so.

Well, my credit is pretty good, but I'm shaken up by this. At one point, they called my boss, who had to say, "Raj is on the line for you, Laura."

The scary thing is they had my DOB and SSN and everything.

It makes me want to cancel all of my credit cards!
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ayeshahaqqiqa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:04 PM
Response to Original message
1. I would if I were you
still doesn't sound legit to me. Do you have a number where you can call the credit card company itself?
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kitty44 Donating Member (96 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:07 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. I would doubt their legitimacy...
but the exact amount and the bank name showed up on my Equifax report. I also called a number for Chase that they provided, and it seemed legit (was transferred all over the place).

Still, I am a little suspicious...
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ayeshahaqqiqa Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:16 PM
Response to Reply #3
9. Get a Chase number independent of theirs
and NEVER give out any information over the phone. Legit companies will tell you about it in writing.
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kitty44 Donating Member (96 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:37 PM
Response to Reply #9
18. This is what scares me.
Still, the exact amount showed up on my credit report.

Here's the collection company (I think):
http://www.ncogroup.com/
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Dorian Gray Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 04:07 PM
Response to Reply #18
24. If someone has your SS#
they can look up your equifax report and find out the information.

I would bet $1000 that it's a scam.

Again, don't give them any information. Contact the CC Company directly and discuss the discrepancy and how to resolve it with them.

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Dorian Gray Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 04:06 PM
Response to Reply #3
22. They may be illigitemate
but capable of checking your equifax report.

NEVER EVER EVER give out your banking info. NEVER! It's a scam.

And call the bank that issued your credit card and discuss the discrepency directly with them.

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jtrockville Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:06 PM
Response to Original message
2. I don't give info unless I place the call, to a # I can verify. (nt)
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Missy M Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:08 PM
Response to Original message
4. Don't fall for their tactics......
they have to send you something in writing. Also, you can write them and request they not call you at work. Don't give them your SS number or your bank account numbers over the phone. You have your rights.
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Gormy Cuss Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:08 PM
Response to Original message
5. Here ya go.
Print out this page and read from it as needed if you get any more calls.
http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/pubs/credit/fdc.shtm

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orleans Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #5
13. great link. thanks for posting it. n/t
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northzax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:08 PM
Response to Original message
6. do you still ahve the actual card?
call the number on the back. they will be able to refer you to the right place to pay. it's odd that their first call is to work, very odd (unless that's the only number they have)

all information is fungible
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:10 PM
Response to Original message
7. Do yourself a favor and cancel the suckers
If you need one for work travel, have it issued by the company.

Do NOT give anybody your routing number over the telephone. Tell them you will pay the hard copy of a bill by check and that is it. They will either leave you alone or send you the bill. They will not want to pursue a small claims case in court from India.

Leaving you alone will lower your credit rating, that's the risk. Considering how stingy lenders are becoming these days, that's not that big a deal and will disappear in 7 years, just about the time a wise Democratic administration starts to get us out of the fiscal mess we're in. Unless you're thinking of buying real estate in this period, play chicken with them and see who gives in first.

Just DON'T give them that number over the phone. Explain you don't know who they are and will never give that information over the phone. Period.
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CC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:14 PM
Response to Original message
8. First write down exactly what time they called
and what was said. Also ask your boss to write down when he answered the phone. Write down that you requested something in writing. Then put it in order and add to it if they contact you again. Tell them they are not allowed to contact you at work.
Since you never knew of the charge and the card company never contacted you about them before now they did not do what they were suppose to to collect. Find you states attorney general website and see how to file a complaint through them. All the above is if it is a legitimate claim but also works if it isn't. In case it isn't I would put a credit freeze on my credit reports. You states attorney general website should have information on how to do that too.

Many collection agencies count on you not knowing the laws they have to follow to get your money from you and will use scare tactics and demands like they did you. It is not legal and they know that but very few people know that or look into it.

If you feel you really owe the money then you can offer to pay it but only through your card issuer and with proof it is owed. Include that with any letter to your attorney general. Also you should cancel any cards you do not plan on using. Keep those you know you might use and can check on regular.






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kitty44 Donating Member (96 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:21 PM
Response to Reply #8
11. I did pay the amount with another credit card...
...because the charge showed up on my credit report.

When I asked that I pay with check and asked for their mailing address, they said that it would take too long.

Now I feel like I was strong-armed.
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CC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:32 PM
Response to Reply #11
16. You were, can you call the other
credit card company and put a hold on it, or dispute the charges? I would try that asap.




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kitty44 Donating Member (96 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #16
17. Too late. They say I can dispute the charge - but not right now.
*sigh*
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CC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:43 PM
Response to Reply #17
19. Well you can still document it
Edited on Wed Feb-06-08 02:46 PM by CC
and file a complaint with your attorney general also the BBB.



I just looked at where you are. If you lived in MD I know they would do something since Curran left all that intact when he left office. It is because of him and his doing such a good job alerting the public that I know any of this.











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RebelOne Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:17 PM
Response to Original message
10. Bill collectors are not allowed to call you at work.
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orleans Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:26 PM
Response to Original message
12. from the link from gormy cuss:
Can you stop a debt collector from contacting you?
You can stop a debt collector from contacting you by writing a letter to the collector telling them to stop. Once the collector receives your letter, they may not contact you again except to say there will be no further contact or to notify you that the debt collector or the creditor intends to take some specific action. Please note, however, that sending such a letter to a collector does not make the debt go away if you actually owe it. You could still be sued by the debt collector or your original creditor.

http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/pubs/credit/fdc.shtm
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backscatter712 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:30 PM
Response to Original message
14. Contacting your boss is illegal.
They can't make efforts to publicly humiliate or embarrass during debt collection - that's against the FDCPA.

Lawyer up, document, document, document, and soon they'll be owing you money...
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elehhhhna Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 04:07 PM
Response to Reply #14
23. TOTALLY!
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mahina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:31 PM
Response to Original message
15. Credit Unions are wonderful.
I cancelled all but my credit union visa. They don't raise the rate if you are a little late, and they don't do stuff like this. So terrible!
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Akoto Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:45 PM
Response to Original message
20. You absolutely do NOT have to pay them then and there.
Edited on Wed Feb-06-08 02:50 PM by Akoto
I would wager that this particular caller committed several violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. We became intimately familiar with those rules after my mom had hospital time without insurance. You might inform the collector of your familiarity with it if they call again. If you're in a state that allows it, you can also record these calls without telling them. Keep those tapes, as well as an accurate list of dates/times/names for the calls, and you're armed to sue.

My suggestion is to first call the creditor (Gold's Gym), confirm your debt, and then see if you can't settle it with them directly. Inform them of the conduct of their collectors and the fact that they're probably breaking the law.

If you can, find out which collections agency is calling you. You can then send a cease and desist letter by certified mail and with return receipt. By law, they must heed your request and cease calling you ANYWHERE, except to inform you of some specific action being taken. They can only communicate in writing at that point.

If you care to fight the issue, get an attorney to send the C&D, and to then order that all communications go through him/her. Believe me, the whole tone of the discussion changes when an attorney comes into the picture. It sure did for us.
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htuttle Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Feb-06-08 02:49 PM
Response to Original message
21. I never, ever pay bill collectors. Ever.
Edited on Wed Feb-06-08 02:50 PM by htuttle
When I've had an outstanding debt, such as from some obscure telephone company for a long-distance collect call from a pay phone that I forgot about, I have always gone and settled with the original creditor. It's usually cheaper that way, too, since you don't have to pay the bogus fees the collection agency adds.

on edit:

Oh, and I never, ever, EVER give out my banking information to someone that calls me on the phone. There's absolutely no way to verify who (or where) they are.
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