Debt collectors are notorious for employing tactics that encourage you to pay the debt as quickly as possible and in full. Some of these tactics, however can quickly become abusive, which you do not have to tolerate. If it happens to you, read on.
Your Rights Under the FDCPA
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, or FDCPA, was passed in 1977 after aggressive debt collectors drove too many consumers to declare bankruptcy. The FDCPA regulates what third-party collectors can say and do to collect a debt, and prohibits actions like those below.
- Using profane and obscene language
- Contacting you if the debt collector is aware that you are being represented by an attorney
- Pretending to be attorneys or police officers
- Calling at inconvenient times, such as before 8:00 a.m. and after 9:00 p.m. in your time zone
- Calling you at work after being informed that your boss does not permit such calls
- Discussing the debt with anyone except the you, your attorney, spouse, or co-signer
Have you been called earlier than 8:00 a.m. your time? If so, your rights as a consumer have been violated and you may be entitled to a settlement.
Company Profile: American Collection Services, Inc.
If you are being called by American Collection Services, Inc., information about the company is below.
American Collection Services, Inc. is a debt collection company located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. It was established in 1977, has less than 20 employees, and is managed by its President, Terri McNeal-Hall. According to the company website, it has over 120 combined years of revenue recovery experience. Records on file at the PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) website confirm that people who felt that they were being harassed by American Collection Services, Inc. filed lawsuits to challenge the company’s claims.
Alleged Violations against American Collection Services, Inc.
Tim Wheeler vs. American Collection Services, Inc.*
According to PACER, in early 2016, Oklahoma resident Tim Wheeler agreed to pay American Collection Services, Inc. $1,700 a month to settle a medical debt. However, in December, 2016, Mr. Wheeler learned that American Collection Services, Inc. had acquired a new debt owed by himself or his spouse and began applying the payments to this new account.
He hired legal counsel regarding the debt, which he now disputed, but on January 17, 2017 the agency allegedly called him directly to demand payment for the original debt. These communications were followed by an email on February 1, 2017.
Feeling harassed by American Collection Services, Inc., Mr. Wheeler hired a consumer attorney and sued the company for allegedly violating the FDCPA by:
- Contacting him directly after learning that he had hired an attorney
- Harassing him by phone
- Using false, deceptive, and misleading means to collect a debt
- Failing to notify the credit bureaus that a debt was disputed
If you've already hired an attorney, the debt collector is obligated to speak with your attorney and not you. Find out more about working with an attorney by filling out our Free Evaluation.
Hire an FDCPA Attorney
The phone numbers for this debt collection agency are:
If you see any of them on your caller ID, it means that you are being called by American Collection Services, Inc.. If they call you constantly and apply pressure to make you pay, contact a consumer attorney. Abusing consumers is against the law, and if you file a claim against American Collection Services, Inc., you may receive $1,000 per FDCPA violation plus court costs and attorney fees. When you stand up to an aggressive debt collector, they can end up in debt to you instead.
*Case taken from PACER (www.pacer.gov). File number is Case 5:17-cv-00423-M from the United States District Court for the Western District of Oklahoma.
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 American Collection Services, Inc. or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.