Is National Action Financial Services calling you? Here’s what you need to know.
With credit card obligations, mortgages, medical bills, and student loans being so prevalent, most Americans are in some degree of personal debt these days. All it can take is a debilitating illness or injury, or loss of employment, to make a relatively normal amount of debt spin out of control and become overwhelming. Accounts that are too far in arrears usually end up being turned over to third-party debt collectors, who can be ruthless when it comes to collecting debt payments.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) restricts what third-party debt collectors can say or do while collecting or attempting to collect debt payments from a consumer. Under the FDCPA, the following actions are prohibited:
- Using obscene and profane languages
- Calling at inconvenient times, such as before 8:00 a.m. and after 9:00 p.m. in the consumer’s time zone.
- Calling someone at work after being informed that such calls are prohibited
- Failing to identify themselves as debt collectors trying to collect a debt
- Threatening legal actions they cannot take or have no intention of taking
- Harassing someone with repeat phone calls
- Telling uninvolved third parties that the consumer they are trying to contact owes a debt
Alleged Violations against National Action Financial Services*
Some debt collectors appear to deliberately ignore the law. National Action Financial Services, a collection agency founded in 1995 and located in Williamsville, NY, operates as a subsidiary of Sitel Worldwide Corporation. According to the PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) system, National Action Financial Services have been sued for harassing consumers and other transgressions during debt collection attempts.
In November 2006, a 78-year-old Pennsylvania resident, received a phone call from a representative of National Action Financial Services. The collector asked her if “[plaintiff’s sister’s name]” was there. The plaintiff replied, “No, [plaintiff’s sister] does not live here.”
The debt collector insisted that the plaintiff’s sister gave him this phone number. When the plaintiff repeated that her sister did not live there, the collector’s alleged response was “You people are garbage. You are a f–ing liar. You are garbage.”
The plaintiff hung up, checked her caller ID, and called the number displayed. When a woman answered the phone, the plaintiff told her that she had just received a nasty call from this number and asked her what kind of company they were. She was told that it was a “financial company.” Then she was placed on hold and the same collector she had spoken to earlier picked up the line.
This collector insisted that the plaintiff was her sister. She repeated that she was her sister, and gave them the name of the company that employed the plaintiff’s sister’s husband, saying that he could tell them how to contact her.
National Action Financial Services kept calling the plaintiff and asking if she was her sister. She became frustrated by all the calls, said she was “[plaintiff’s name], Mrs. [plaintiff’s husband]” and disconnected the line.
The complaint she filed via her attorney accused National Action Financial Services of the following FDCPA violations:
- Using abusive language (15 U.S.C. § 1692d(2))
- Making a false representation to collect a debt (15 U.S.C. § 1692e(10))
- Using unfair and unconscionable means to collect a debt (15 U.S.C. §1692f)
The matter was later settled.
The phone number for National Action Financial Services is 1-716-565-1020. If you get calls from this number, a debt collector from their firm is trying to collect payments on a debt you allegedly owe. If they swear at you and refuse to believe that you are not the person who owes the debt, contact a consumer attorney. Such abuse and harassment is punishable under the FDCPA, and you could be compensated up to $1000 per violation.
*Case taken from PACER (www.pacer.gov). File number is 3:07-cv-00034-TMB, from United States District Court, Middle District of Pennsylvania.
Disclaimer: The content of this article serves only to provide information and should not be construed as legal advice. If you file a claim against National Action Financial Services or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.