Is the Collection Bureau Calling You?* Here's What You Need to Know
You know that you’re in financial trouble when the phone ringing causes your heartbeat to quicken. Is it that debt collector again, the one who curses you out when you pick up and threatens to send the police around if you don’t pay in full immediately? You know it’s pointless to talk to them because you can’t afford to pay, but is there anything short of personal bankruptcy that can make them stop calling?
Yes. It’s called the FDCPA.
Your Rights Under the FDCPA
In 1977 Congress passed the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, or FDCPA, to stop third-party debt collectors from driving indebted consumers to personal bankruptcy, illness, and marital breakdown. Collection tactics that are now illegal include:
- Swearing, raising their voice, and making threats they have no intention of carrying out
- Calling someone at all hours of the day and night
- Discussing the debt with the debtor’s family, friends, and co-workers
- Calling a person at work when they know the employer doesn’t allow you to take personal calls
- Pretending to be attorneys, police officers, or federal agents
- Leaving voice messages that do not identify the collector and the purpose of their call
Company Profile: the Collection Bureau
The Collection Bureau is a collection agency located in Northglenn, Colorado. It was founded in 1994, has a branch office in Loveland, Colorado, and is managed by its President, Michael Markovich. A review of records on file at the PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) website, confirms that the Collection Bureau has been sued by indebted consumers who complained that their rights under the FDCPA had been disregarded.
Alleged Violations against the Collection Bureau
According to PACER**, sometime before 2012 a Colorado consumer allegedly defaulted on an Allied Cash Advance loan, which was consequently passed to the Collection Bureau. In April 2012 the agency reported the debt to Transunion, a credit reporting agency, so the consumer contacted it to dispute the debt. He later claimed that when he stated, “I’m disputing this bill” the collector replied, “It’s too late, sir.... You can dispute it all you want.”
After June 2012 the consumer discovered that the Collection Bureau allegedly kept reporting the debt to Experian, Equifax and/or Transunion and did not note it as disputed. He hired a consumer attorney and sued the agency for the following alleged FDCPA violations:
- Using false and misleading means to collect a debt
- Using unfair or unconscionable means to collect or attempt to collect a debt
The matter was later settled.
Hire an Attorney
The phone numbers for the Collection Bureau are:
If any of these numbers show up on your caller ID, a debt collector is trying to reach you. If you dispute the debt and they fail to report it to the credit bureaus as disputed, hire an attorney who can assist you in taking legal action against the Collection Bureau. A judge could order the agency to pay you $1,000 per FDCPA violation as well as attorney's fees, court costs, and any actual damages. Ignoring your rights is a mistake that could cost them.
**Case taken from PACER (www.pacer.gov). File number is (Case 1:13-cv-01566-WYD-MJW from United States District Court for the District of Colorado)
The content of this article serves only to provide information and should not be construed as legal advice. If you file a claim against Collection Bureau or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.