Once your credit card bills, medical debt, student loans, and other obligations go into significant arrears because you lost your job or became ill, your creditors may turn them over to a collection agency.
These third-party debt collectors are supposed to deal with you fairly, but a lot of them try to squeeze money out of consumers by threatening jail time and lawsuits. If you’re dealing with this type of company, here is some information about your rights.
Your Rights Under the FDCPA
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, or FDCPA, governs the conduct of third-party debt collectors and prohibit collection actions like those below. Any violations are punishable by fines and even loss of the company’s collection license.:
- Ignoring a formal cease communications request
- Using profane and obscene language
- Discussing the debt with your family, friends, and co-workers
- Demanding amounts that exceed the original debt
- Calling non-stop with the intention of harassing you
- Refusing to validate the debt on request
Company Profile: Account Discovery Systems, LLC
If you are being called by Account Discovery Systems, LLC, details about the company origins and operations are below.
Account Discovery Systems, LLC is a debt collection agency located in Amherst, New York. It was founded in 2011, has approximately 25 employees, and is managed by President John Chebat. The company has a B rating at the Better Business Bureau.
In January 2008 it partnered with Tudor Consultants USA, Inc. to establish a call center in Jamaica. Consumer litigation records digitized at the PACER website show that consumers who felt they were being harassed by Account Discovery Systems, LLC went to court to make payment demands of their own.
Alleged Violations against Account Discovery Systems, LLC
According to PACER, on or around January 31, 2013, Account Discovery Systems, LLC called an Arizona consumer to collect a debt she allegedly owed to a jewelry company. The collector told her that she had co-signed for a diamond ring her son had purchased.
When she denied it and asked why the company wasn’t approaching her son instead, she was allegedly told that it was because he was unemployed and they “could see that you have very good credit and a credit card” that she could use to pay.
During this call the collector allegedly threatened to ruin her credit by filing a judgment against her. They also allegedly stated that they had run her credit report and were aware of credit cards she had and the limits of those cards.
Account Discovery Systems, LLC allegedly demanded $21,000, but offered to accept $7,000. Feeling harassed, the consumer paid the amount by credit card.
Then she conducted a further investigation and realized that the alleged “debt” was non-existent as she had never filled out an application at that store or accompanied her son there. Her son had an account, but her name was not on it.
Angry, the consumer stopped the $7,000 payment, only to receive an allegedly threatening call from Account Discovery Systems, LLC. When she said that she had reported them to the Federal Trade Commission, the caller allegedly responded, “I don’t care what the FTC told you. Are they the one that is going to be defending you in court?”
Feeling harassed by Account Discovery Systems, LLC, the consumer sued the company for violating her rights by:
- Misrepresenting the character, amount, or legal status of the debt
- Using false, deceptive, and misleading means to collect a debt
- Using unfair and unconscionable means to collect a debt
A judge later ruled in favor of the plaintiff.
Hire a Consumer Lawyer
The phone numbers for Account Discovery Systems, LLC are:
Their appearance on your caller ID means that you are being called by Account Discovery Systems, LLC. If they try to threaten and bully you into paying a debt you don’t even owe, you can make them pay instead by hiring a consumer lawyer and filing a claim against Account Discovery Systems, LLC.
An unethical collection agency can find itself on the receiving end of a judgment for thousands of dollars in FDCPA violations, so don’t let fear or shame prevent you from acting on your rights.
Case taken from PACER (www.pacer.gov). File number is Case 2:13-cv-01755-ROS from the United States District Court for the District of Arizona.
*Disclaimer: The content of this article serves only to provide information and should not be constructed as legal advice. If you file a claim against Account Discovery Systems, LLC or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.