NCO Financial Systems, also known as NCO Group, is one of the largest debt collection agencies in the world, being a subsidiary of Texas-based Expert Global Solutions. The company operates more than 100 offices across eleven countries. While the collection agency used to be a publicly held company, they were taken private by management in the year 2006. Like any debt collection organization, NCO Financial Systems must abide by laws put into place by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), which protects consumers from unscrupulous debt collection practices.
The FDCPA Laws that NCO Financial Systems has Been Accused of Violating
NCO Financial Systems has been accused of violating the FDCPA in the past. The most notable case was filed in 2013.
In 2013* NCO Financial Systems was charged with a $3.2 million dollar penalty for violating FTC laws. This unprecedented fine was leveled against the company due to its failure to comply with a number of consumer protection laws. To operate lawfully, collection agencies must abide by a number of standards including the following, which NCO Financial Systems was accused of breaching.
A “FOTI message” is a type of message left when a debt collector leaves a voice mail for a debtor and the debt collector is required to disclose the name of their company and that they are acting as a debt collector, attempting to collect a debt. However, these voice mails are no longer allowed unless they specifically state that the voicemail message is intended only for the consumer whom the company is trying to collect the debt from. NCO Financial Systems allegedly failed to implement this important information, allowing third parties to gain access to debtor information.
In addition, debt collectors must honor your verbal cease and desist requests and verbal disputes of debts. After a verbal cease and desist requests and/or verbal disputes of debt, NCO Financial Systems allegedly failed to honor consumer requests, thereby violating consumer protection laws.
Furthermore, the FTC requires collection agencies to validate debts, providing debtors with information such as the original creditor and the consumer reporting agencies they reported debts to. NCO also allegedly failed to adhere to these laws.
What to Do If NCO Financial Systems Contacts You*
If NCO Financial Systems contacts you regarding a debt you owe, you have the right to request that they validate the debt. The request can be made either verbally or in writing. You may, however, want to submit the request in writing and send it via certified mail to obtain proof that the company has received the request. Then, if NCO Financial Systems continues to harass you after the request has been made, keep a log of all of the calls they make to you including dates and times of the calls, the numbers they called you from, and the name of the representative who contacted you, if possible.
If the harassment does not stop, you may want to contact an FDCPA attorney . In a court of law, NCO Financial Systems may be held responsible for $1,000 in statutory damages for each time they violate the law as well as any actual damages you may incur. Your FDCPA attorney will help you understand how much money you may be able to recover from NCO Financial Systems. They will also often work on a contingency basis, collecting a percentage of the damages you are awarded by the court instead of demanding any up-front out-of-pocket expense.
* According to Cogburn Law
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 NCO Financial Systems or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.