Question. I recently sent out a debt validation letter to a collection agency on a paid debt. 2days letter I received a form letter from the CA that reads, we are in receipt of your inquiry and understand your concerns.
The info has been forwarded to the court of record for processing. All detail and financial information regarding this case resides with the court and should be discussed with the court of record. Please contact them with all questions.
If the court does not instruct us otherwise the debt remains valid and collection efforts will resume. All appropriate court sanctions will remain in place. This is not verification right? Do I write again or wait 30 days for an answer from the court?
This is a collection on a ticket for a broken windshield that was received by my father, we have the same name and at the time the same address but they are reporting on my credit report and did not allow me to license any of my cars or renew my license until paid.
I fought and fought with them but they wouldn’t budge and I had to pay it for him so I could get my license as required by my job. What’s my best avenue to continue to get this removed?
Answer. At this point I see no reason to request debt validation for a paid debt. You can certainly ask but they have no incentive in honoring your request because you have already paid the debt. Also, their duty to provide debt validation ended if they properly provided a debt validation notice in their initial correspondence to you.
To get the negative mark removed I think you have only 4 choices:
1. Dispute. You can get the records from the court on your own. Once you have records from the court to prove the ticket actually belongs to your father, dispute with the credit bureaus using the court records as your supporting documentation. The FRCA requires only accurate information be reported by the credit bureaus and since this is not your debt, inaccurate information is being reported by the credit bureaus.
2. 623 Letter. The 623 credit dispute is a method of disputing a negative account directly with the furnisher of the negative information on your credit report. The information furnisher is any entity reporting information to the credit bureaus about you. In accordance with the FACT Act the furnisher of the information must respond, within 30 days, just like the credit bureaus are required to respond to disputes within 30 days or the negative item must be removed from your credit report.
However, before you dispute with the furnisher of information (collection agency) you must first dispute the negative item with the credit bureaus. You can find more information the 623 letter here.
3. Goodwill Letter. Send a goodwill letter to the collection agency requesting they delete the information from your credit reports and explain to them the mix up. They may be open to removing the mark from your credit report since the debt was mistakenly assessed to you instead of your father. Send the letter to someone in authority at the debt collector who would have the power to remove the negative mark.
4. Seek Legal Help. You may have a lawsuit on your hands since the collection agency wrongfully placed the negative mark on your credit reports and you have proof the debt does not belong to you. An attorney well versed in the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act may be able to sue to get the debt removed and for damages.
If you don't know of a consumer law attorney, a good place to start is Naca.net. They have a state by state listing of consumer law attorneys specializing in FDCPA and FRCA law. Good luck to you.