Were you contacted by Guardian Portfolio Services?* Here's what you need to know.
If you miss too many credit card payments, the accounts will eventually be turned over to third-party debt collectors. Although such behavior is illegal, many of them are pushy and verbally hostile each time they get you on the phone. Don’t be intimidated by such aggressive approaches: their actions are illegal and you have the right to make it stop.
Your Rights Under the FDCPA
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) regulates how third-party debt collectors may deal with consumers while trying to collect a debt. They are required to refrain from using underhanded or abusive tactics like those listed below:
- Threatening action they are not in a position to legally take
- Calling your friends, neighbors, and co-workers and telling them that you owe a debt
- Using profane or obscene language
- Threatening you with a lawsuit when they have no intention of initiating one
- Calling you before 8:00 a.m. and after 9:00 p.m. in your time zone
- Misrepresenting how much you owe.
Company Profile: Guardian Portfolio Services
If you were contacted by Guardian Portfolio Services, information about the company is below.
Guardian Portfolio Services is a debt collection agency located in St. Petersburg, Florida and was established in 2002. According to its website, it has the “Highest Contact Rates Industry Wide." Litigation records retained by the PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) website show a consumer who believed he was harassed by Guardian Portfolio Services and two other companies filed a complaint in federal court.**
According to PACER, on or about July 1, 2011, a Guardian Portfolio Services representative came to the apartment complex of a Pennsylvania resident regarding a motor vehicle debt. The plaintiff later alleged that the representative knocked on multiple neighbors’ doors advising those who answered that Guardian Portfolio Services was representing Wells Fargo Bank and he was attempting to locate the the plaintiff's residence.
Feeling harassed, the plaintiff hired a consumer attorney and filed complaint alleging some of the following FDCPA violations:
- Engaging in conduct the natural consequence is to harass, oppress, or abuse any person in connection with the collection of a debt;
- The use of unfair or unconscionable means to collect a debt or obtain information about a consumer;
- The use of false, deceptive, or misleading representations or means in connection with the collection of a debt.
The matter was later dismissed.
Hire an Attorney
If Guardian Portfolio Services attempts to harass you or violates the FDCPA in any other manner, hire a consumer attorney right away. If you file a claim against Guardian Portfolio Services, you could potentially receive $1,000 per FDCPA violation. When debt collectors cross the line with you, the law helps you firmly push them back.
*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 Guardian Portfolio Services, or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.
**Case taken from PACER (www.pacer.gov). File number is Case 2:11-cv-07579-MSG, Travis Starun v. Guardian Portfolio Services; Collateral Adjustment; Wells Fargo Bank, from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.