Debt collectors illegally hound people who don't owe money




This has happened to me about 5 times. The debts were never real. When I realized they hadn't affected my credit in any way, I just started ignoring them and sometimes spouting stuff back to them in their faces to make them stop calling, and they eventually did.


The collections department for my hospital, one of the world's most prestigious, does illegal collections and refuses to stop. Once Comcast tried collecting on a debt I didn't owe using illegal robocalls, and that is the last time I've used Comcast.


YES. One of the 5 that I mentioned was a hospital, fer krise-sake


It's not exactly fraudulent debt collection calls, but I've gotten 3 parking tickets for a car I sold six months ago.

The first time, I sent in a copy of the title transfer document, and got a reply saying that the ticket had been dismissed and that they have corrected their records.

Same thing has happened the more recent two times, except all I got in the most recent one was a final warning saying that the first court date had lapsed, and that it would go to collections. Which was kinda scary. I sent in the copy of the title transfer and the previous notes they sent me saying they would correct the records yesterday.

I'm getting annoyed that I might have to take time off of work go to the municipal court (which is about 10 miles away from the town I actually live in, and 25 miles from where I work.) It's just obnoxious that I keep getting sternly worded, legally binding correspondence from the government because someone else keeps fucking up where they park.


I have gotten robocalls for the person who lived here before I did. The debt collectors used the reverse directory to look up the number listed at this address. That number was my new number and had never been used by the person who had lived here before I did. It took a long time to get them to stop.

Also since when I moved to my new home, I had to have a "new" phone number which turned out to have previously belonged to someone who owed money, I got phone after phone call. It took a long time to get them to stop doing that too. I never owed money in either of these cases. I hate robocalls!


What does "fraudulent robo signing" means?


Its a tactic used in US court documents, especially by banks and debt collectors, whereby they attest to knowledge of debts that they have no true knowledge of, and do so in mass quantities to push through as many collections cases as possible. The truth is that the banks and the debt collectors that buy the debt they can't collect on have terrible records and wind up hassling and suing the wrong people all the time. They are engaged in criminally fraudulent behavior at the courts and have been doing so for many years now, with little repercussions. Wells Fargo actually published a foreclosure manual for its attorneys that includes instructions on how and when to forge documents to submit to the court. For more info, check out this blog post from the excellent Naked Capitalism blog:


Send them one more copy of all of the prior correspondence and proof, and within that letter, at the top, include not only their address, but also the address of the FTC. Send the letters to both with certified mail.


I haven't actually gotten anything from a collections agency. Just the city's municipal court where the infractions occurred. I've sent them the previous correspondence every time. It's not seeming to do anything.

The only option I seem to have at the moment is either 1.) hope that the city finally corrects its records, and if it doesn't, keep sending in all of their false promises and get pardoned every time the people who bought my old car park illegally. 2.) Go to the courthouse and ask them personally to correct the records, and be promised that they'll be taken care of in 6-to-12-weeks/the end of the fiscal year/by the time Ragnarok has come and gone. Or 3.) do nothing when a parking ticket arrives in the mail, and when the collection agency is set loose, try to convince them that I sold the car already, and the license plate # isn't in my name anymore.


I've had this problem twice, with robo-calls to the previous owner of my phone number. When a human calls, I can explain and they never call again, but there's no reasoning with the computer.

I'm on the Do Not Call list, and I've actually filed once with the FTC.


That sounds, to me, almost exactly the same as the fraudulent automated DMCA C&Ds. Why does one breed of scum get away with abusing the DMCA this way, but another fetid pile get in trouble for doing the same thing?

Honestly. A robot (today) can't attest to knowledge in either of these cases. They should both be treated equally and the people deploying this software should be treated as if they personally committed these offenses.



I unsubscribed from a magazine about 3 years ago, but I keep getting calls about 2-3 times a month from people asking me to renew the subscription. I've told them I cancelled years ago. I've told them I've never done business with them. I've told them I'm on the Do Not Call list, and calling me, and giving other companies my number is illegal. I've let them know that I'm filing FTC complaints after each call.

I've followed through and filed with the FTC every time. I've also done some "secret squirrel" work (I have a friend with some connections and hardware), and have lodged complaints with the state AGs of the states they call from. It's maddening. I DON'T WANT ANY. If these companies were real people, I could get a court order and never see hide or hair of them for the rest of my life. But it seems that every time I lodge a complaint, or tell them to put me on their corporate Do Not Call list, the calls double.

Although, I prefer shouting at some poor bastard who can't make ends meet over the phone, to getting documents from municipal governments threatening to sick their collections dogs on me.


I started getting mail under my old name for verizon bills that I know I paid, but this was years ago. I google the company trying to collect, and apparently they buy old customer databases from companies and then they try put them all in collections for arbitrary amounts. It's infuriating and it better not damage my credit rating, but there's nothing I can do.


If you know the debt is paid (or past the statute of limitations) and you know the company trying to collect it, then you can report them to the FTC as violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Actually, I'm surprised this far down in the comments no one mentioned it by name yet.


But you didn't send the correspondence with a copy to the FTC. It's not that you need the response from the FTC, it's that you are telling the first party that you're willing to report their shenanigans. You're letting them know this by having both addresses in the 'to addresses'. It's passive aggressive, yes. But it has worked for me to get things resolved quickly. Surprisingly, the FTC responds quickly. It's worth a shot for peace of mind, instead of waiting for them to get their act together.


Sadly, I allow most calls to go to voicemail, if I don't know the number. Sometimes, it's worth it to have more than one number. Once you answer the calls, they will never stop. It sucks if this occurs on a business line that requires you to pick up each call. But otherwise, don't answer.
If people stopped picking up on robo-calls, they would cease to be profitable and then become a pointless endeavor. It's too bad we can't keep the elderly from falling prey to it.


I'm not 100% sure, but I think that title transfer does not change who the plates are registered to. The buyer should have obtained their own plates.


A friend had a similar situation when selling a used car. The new owner never registered the vehicle and so tickets were coming back to the first owner. I'm pretty sure that he never passed on the plates, however. This issue was resolved by contacting motor vehicles in that circumstance, I believe.


Yea, blame the workers, that always helps.

I'm on the other end of the DNC laws right now. I don't telemarket, but I'm in an industry that sometimes does, so I get trained on the law. It's a $10,000 fine for each violation, and I believe the person you call gets the money. That said, I've never heard a peep back from the FTC - I doubt they have one-tenth the staff they would need to actually enforce.

Not in my experience.