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Old 03-22-2018, 07:55 AM
KCZ
 
1,548 posts, read 761,191 times
Reputation: 4332

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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankMiller View Post
It seems weird to me that the first time you heard about this accident was after you've been sued, lost, and the judgement amount has failed to be collected by the originator. But, I'm not a lawyer.

Probably the father has been receiving paperwork on this since the accident, and now that the collection agency is involved, they've decided to go after the OP as co-signer. OP, what does your father have to say about all this? It would be helpful if he was willing to disclose what he did with the car, if he has any paperwork showing he sold the car to someone else, and the paperwork trail regarding the lawsuit.
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Old 03-22-2018, 09:52 AM
 
Location: California
4,445 posts, read 5,168,213 times
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We had someone call us for a bill which we never had so insisted they were scammers and told them never to call again. Did you cross check their phone number? Our caller's number was notorious for pulling that scam on people. After 7 years I'm not sure they can legally go after you.

Good luck and don't take the bait.
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:01 AM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
2,961 posts, read 1,007,246 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cebuan View Post
Corrrect me on this point, if I am wrong. A collection agency is a firm that buys previously uncollected debts, and assumes the right to recover. They buy the debt for a fraction of its face value, and collect what they can, in hopes of turning a profit. Sometimes they get it all, sometimes they get nothing. An in-between can be negotiated.

The original has already sold the debt for a fraction of the amount due, and is now out of the picture.
All that is true, as H140 already noted. But the issue here isn't "what is a collection agency?" but "what is a collection agency doing trying to shake a court settlement out of an unconnected person?"

There are so many phishing/strongarm phone scams these days that I can't give a lot of credence to the OP's telling of the story - I think it must have details that have been changed or rearranged (from utterly innocent causes on his part) - e.g. some careful phishers will avoid saying "collection agency" but keep stressing they are collecting this amount.

I would neither ignore it nor try to deal with this entity directly. The OP should find a competent attorney who will at least investigate for a reasonable fee.
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:30 AM
 
3,529 posts, read 2,172,235 times
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It's difficult to discern because collections agencies are basically scammers in their own right.
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Old 03-22-2018, 10:44 AM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
2,961 posts, read 1,007,246 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrankMiller View Post
It's difficult to discern because collections agencies are basically scammers in their own right.
I think we have to grudgingly allow collection agencies and repo men their place in things. But yes, both operate in something of a gray area and collectors use tactics not unfamiliar to Vinnie and Rocko types.

I think the OP's situation is either an outright scam, and they've provided enough loosely matching details (perhaps extracted from him during the phone call) to make it convincing, or a "legal phish," attempting to get a loosely connected person to pay up for an acquired debt or contract. I've had four or five such in my life, trying to collect on things like parking tickets with a smudged license number that might match mine and other loose "record sifting" matches.

And my phone rings three times a day, these days, with IRS and other strong-arm scams. It's hard to say which the OP is dealing with, which is why he shouldn't - only a narrow range would be sensible to deal with as an (uninformed) individual.
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Old 03-22-2018, 02:19 PM
KCZ
 
1,548 posts, read 761,191 times
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If the Memorandum of Costs after Judgement that the OP received looks genuine, he would be well-advised to consult an attorney experienced in debt collection and not treat this as a scam or phishing.
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Old 03-22-2018, 02:20 PM
 
Location: Myrtle Creek, Oregon
11,039 posts, read 11,450,778 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Forager22 View Post
So the story is a long one, Ill try to keep it short.

About 7 years ago (2011) my pops got me my first car and cosigned me onto the loan. About 2 year into the payments, I guess he defaulted and we got the car repossessed. This was the first time around and we payed the fees for the repo and got caught up with the payments and ultimately got the car back. Several months later the car got repossessed again due to default on the payments (again). Now at this point at around the beginning of 2014, I got fed up and decided to go about work and school with my brothers car instead. Years have passed and now around the beginning of year 2018 I get a call from a collections agency telling me they are going to sue me for an accident that happened in October 2014. I NEVER EVEN HAD THE CAR AT THAT POINT AND NEITHER DID MY POPS. The guy was rude and snarky, and it sounded too much like a scam, so I disregarded the call. I get a letter a month later; a "memorandum of cost after judgement" and now it seems all too real. Apparently it was still under me and my fathers name and therefore we are held responsible, but according to my credit report the last dated payment is May 2014. This makes no sense! What do I do?

Thank you guys in advance and I really hope to get this all figured out.
A memorandum is just a memorandum. It sounds like they are throwing numbers at a wall to see if any stick. If you were not served by a process server to answer a suit, there is no judgment. The first thing I would demand is a copy of the judgment, signed by a judge, with all supporting documentation, including the process server's affidavit.

Tell them it was not your car, and to get their paperwork in order. If pops was served and ignored the summons, it's on him. The statute of limitations on torts is typically 3 years, though that might vary by state and circumstance. You probably were on the title in 2014, but the repo company was responsible for securing it. If they claimed ownership and took possession of the car, let them deal with it.

Keep an eye on your credit report, and challenge any negative info relating to this as an attempt at a fraudulent collection by the collection agency. It happens all the time.
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Old 03-22-2018, 02:52 PM
 
4,377 posts, read 1,482,020 times
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I'm wondering...would the memorandum of Judgement state the date and maybe other details of the accident? Seems like there would be a police report out there somewhere.
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Old 03-22-2018, 03:35 PM
 
Location: Aurora Denveralis
2,961 posts, read 1,007,246 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KCZ View Post
If the Memorandum of Costs after Judgement that the OP received looks genuine, he would be well-advised to consult an attorney experienced in debt collection and not treat this as a scam or phishing.
Wouldn't such a thing have easily verifiable details on it - jurisdiction, court, case number, etc.? The OP could simply call that agency (just perhaps after looking up the number independently; some phishing efforts can get very elaborate) and ask about the details and status. And possibly get some (bureaucratic) advice about how to proceed.

But if all the demands stop with a collection agency's say-so and "internal case number" and such, there's Klingons off the starboard bow, Jim.
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Old 03-22-2018, 04:36 PM
 
Location: Ohio
17,986 posts, read 13,233,625 times
Reputation: 13765
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forager22 View Post
Several months later the car got repossessed again due to default on the payments (again). Now at this point at around the beginning of 2014, I got fed up and decided to go about work and school with my brothers car instead. Years have passed and now around the beginning of year 2018 I get a call from a collections agency telling me they are going to sue me for an accident that happened in October 2014. I NEVER EVEN HAD THE CAR AT THAT POINT AND NEITHER DID MY POPS. The guy was rude and snarky, and it sounded too much like a scam, so I disregarded the call. I get a letter a month later; a "memorandum of cost after judgement" and now it seems all too real. Apparently it was still under me and my fathers name and therefore we are held responsible, but according to my credit report the last dated payment is May 2014. This makes no sense! What do I do?

Thank you guys in advance and I really hope to get this all figured out.
In many States, but not all, you can go on-line and search your name to see if any criminal or civil actions were filed against you. If you live in a State that does not permit on-line searches (usually due to privacy reasons), you'll have to go to your local courthouse and search there. Ask one of the court clerks to help you locate any possible criminal or civil actions in your name or your father's name.

If there actually is case on file, scrutinize the document paying special attention to the address listed for you (or your father).

Collection agencies, junk debt buyers and debt collection law firms are notorious for intentionally filing suit using old addresses. Since service is performed at your former address -- and you're not living there -- you will naturally be unaware of any legal action and not be able to file an answer to the law suit, allowing the collection agency, junk debt buyer or debt collection law firm to get a quick default judgment.

If that is the case, you may file a motion to vacate the judgement. Obtain a copy of your credit report and look at the hard inquiries, because that will often be proof they were aware of your current address but chose to intentionally service you at a false address (your former address) which is actionable under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and your State's collection laws (that will typically force them to eat the debt).

It could also be the document they sent you is false on its face, and that makes it an illegal attempt to collect a debt, which is also actionable under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and your State's collection laws.

If you feel overwhelmed, you might want to contact Edelman, Combs, Latturner & Goodwin. They're the best in the business, and even though they're based in Chicago, they handle cases everywhere, by having an attorney local to you file all the pleadings.

Chicago Consumer Rights Lawyer | Chicago Debt Collector Harassment Attorney | Consumer Class Action Lawyers

Quote:
Originally Posted by cebuan View Post
If you were contacted by a collection agency, none of the original lenders are involved any more. The collection agency has bought the debt, for pennies on the dollar.
Quote:
Originally Posted by cebuan View Post
Corrrect me on this point, if I am wrong. A collection agency is a firm that buys previously uncollected debts, and assumes the right to recover. They buy the debt for a fraction of its face value, and collect what they can, in hopes of turning a profit. Sometimes they get it all, sometimes they get nothing. An in-between can be negotiated.

The original has already sold the debt for a fraction of the amount due, and is now out of the picture.
You're confusing collection agencies with junk debt buyers.

Collection agencies take debt on assignment, while junk debt buyers purchase debt for pennies on the dollar.

While the now defunct Asset Acceptance Corporation was purely a junk debt buyer (who got burned by the Federal Trade Commission), NCO Financial is both a collection agency and a junk debt buyer, sometimes taking debt on assignment and sometimes purchasing blocks of defaulted credit card or other debts from creditors. NCO Financial has accounts with most major hospital cartels, and so is one of the primary collection agencies for medical debts (there are others, but NCO Financial is the most well known).

Debt collection law firms generally take debt on assignment and do not purchase debts.

Generally, if you contact the original creditor, they can tell you whether your debt has been assigned or if it was sold.

Different credit card banks have different policies. They are required by federal regulations to charge off debt that is 180 days past due, and will typically assign the debt to a collection agency, then sell the debt after the statute of limitations has expired. However, some credit card banks, like Crapital One will assign it for 6 months to collections, then sell the debt to a junk debt buyer. The debt goes through a debt broker to be sold.

A consumer defense lawyer once e-mailed me a transcript of a deposition taken from the CFO of Asset Acceptance maybe 10-12 years ago, so I'm quite familiar with the process since she goes into extreme detail. She stated $0.03 to $0.27 on the dollar for purchased debt. $0.03 on the dollar is typical for debt that's out-of-statute meaning the statute of limitations has expired. That does not necessarily preclude the filing of a lawsuit, since as the Defendant, you must state in your answer as an Absolute Defense that the statute of limitations has expired. Note that for some States, the statute of limitations is also a statute of repose, meaning that once the statute has expired, the debt is wiped away and any attempt to collect it violates the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, plus applicable State collection laws.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sassybluesy View Post
I'm wondering...would the memorandum of Judgement state the date and maybe other details of the accident? Seems like there would be a police report out there somewhere.
No, the judgment would only link back to the underlying case number in civil court. From the case file, you can obtain details of the accident.
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