Debt Validation[ Edited ]
05-09-2007 06:59 PM - edited 03-30-2010 08:48 AM
FDCPA requires a CA to send you an initial written notice containing these five things:
- the amount of the debt;
- the name of the creditor to whom the debt is owed;
- a statement that unless the consumer, within thirty days after receipt of the notice, disputes the validity of the debt, or any portion thereof, the debt will be assumed to be valid by the debt collector;
- a statement that if the consumer notifies the debt collector in writing within the thirty-day period that the debt, or any portion thereof, is disputed, the debt collector will obtain verification of the debt or a copy of a judgment against the consumer and a copy of such verification or judgment will be mailed to the consumer by the debt collector; and
- a statement that, upon the consumer's written request within the thirty-day period, the debt collector will provide the consumer with the name and address of the original creditor, if different from the current creditor.
If the CA does not include these, they are in violation of FDCPA. Save the written notice you receive. Your lawyer will be happy you did.
Regardless, now is the time to request validation. Debt Validation is a powerful weapon. Use it.
Ignore the DV form letters you find out there. KISS principle.
"I pulled my credit bureau report, and I discovered that you claim I owe you a debt. Under § 809 of FDCPA, send me validation of this debt."
"You claim I owe you a debt. In accordance with FDCPA, send me validation of this debt."
"I receive your letter claiming I owe you a debt. Per the FDCPA, send me validation of this debt."
Send the DV letter CMRRR, save your CM receipt, save your RRR green card when it comes back, save your USPS receipt (CM # is on it), photocopy your signed DV letter and save that.
Also include a reference line at the top of your letter.
USPS CERTIFIED MAIL xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx xxxx
Don't use the words "cease and desist" in a DV letter. There's no such thing as limited C&D so don't get cute.
If you say C&D in any context, they will likely comply by ceasing and desisting. If you're still under the SOL, they will also likely now sue. They will probably tell the judge if it goes to court they were complying with your instructions to C&D. They could argue that by C&Ding them they were not legally obliged to validate. Don't cheat yourself out of catching them in one or more violations.
Save every letter and notice you get in the mail, and save copies of everything you send. It probably won't hurt to make 3-5 photocopies of everything you send out.