Capitalism at all costs has lead our leaders to allow lax debt collection laws to provide a breeding ground for junk debt buyers like this. It is a collect at all costs mentality that could care less about the consumer on the recieving end of their strong armed tactics. Could care less if the debt is valid (see Bank Of America selling Cach debt records that they could not provide any documentation for in 2012). Could care less if you are pregnant like Viviana, or elderly and on a fixed income.
The one thing the do care about is their “investment”. They assume that by purchasing old debts for pennies on the dollar, that the numbers will work in their favor. In layman’s terms, that means they expect to be able to scare enough consumers into paying back their expired debts in full plus interest on enough accounts to make the “investment” worthwhile.
As I mentioned above, it is big business in our country so it is clearly profitable.
But what can you do as a consumer to move forward?
The first and most important thing is to not let the collection agency tactics overwhelm and disrupt your life. I realize that is easier said than done, and when I got my first collection letter I don’t think I sleep for a week. Hindsight is 20/20 though and it time the stress, worry and burden eased. It was not an easy path but one I wanted to share with other consumers that are caught up in the junk debt madness.
For me, the most important thing was to understand the Fair Credit Collections Act, your rights and the laws as the applied to my situation. There was entirely too much disinformation from the actual collection agency, and even more lies from a shady debt settlement company and no clear resource to turn to. This was long before the internet so I had no way to know what was what. Now-a-days, you can contact the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau directly. They oversee the entire credit and debt industry and should be able to point you in the right direction. I have heard of some cases getting completely dropped once a consumer speaks with the CFPB. They are well versed on the shenanigans and fraud schemes that debt collectors use. They know that these companies have a core group of founders that turn business into to business into and endless, revolving door of LLC’s to keep the game going. They can help protect you and let you know if the company is valid or just phishing for an opportunity to take your money with no legal rights to do so.
Although it took many years and lots of sleepless nights, I was eventually able to settle my debts and rebuild my credit history successfully.