Associated Recovery Systems Can Harm Your Personal Credit Score. But You Can Prevent Permanent Damage.
Debt collection companies like Associated Recovery Systems turn a profit by buying defaulted debts for pennies on the dollar from credit card companies, retail stores, medical clinics, utilities, cellular providers, banks, etc–basically any kind of company that provides consumer credit.
Then, debt collectors like Associated Recovery Systems turn around and expect the debtor to repay the full, original amount of the debt.There are lots of opportunities for things to go wrong during the debt collection process, and unfortunately many people have been targeted for collection on invalid, inaccurate, or unverifiable debts.
Here are some examples of bad collection attempts:
- Expired Debts. If too much time has elapsed since your last debt payment, the statute of limitations on that debt can run out. If that happens, the debt is expired and it is illegal for anyone to attempt to collect on it.
- Debts that Belong to Someone Else. This happens more frequently than you might think. Many people have reported receiving collection notices for a complete stranger at their address or phone number. This can happen due to identity theft or due to a mix up in the phone or address records.
- Previously Repaid Debts. Sometimes the original lender may accidentally include a paid account in a batch that is sold to a debt collection agency. Obviously, you only need to pay a debt once!
- Debts Still Active with the Original Lender. Another common clerical error is selling an active debt to a debt collector. If both the original lender and a debt collection company like Associated Recovery Systems are pursuing repayment of the same debt, you know something is wrong.
- Debts Cleared in a Bankruptcy Most kinds of debts can be wiped out by declaring bankruptcy, making them out of bounds for collection.
Bad collection attempts can result from carelessness or bad record keeping on either the debt collector’s or the original lender’s part. Some people would say it also happens maliciously.
If you are contacted about a debt that you believe is invalid or inaccurate, the best thing you can do is contact a professional. By doing so, you can get your issue resolved quickly and favorably.
If you wish to pursue the self-help method of resolving debt collection issues, here are a few tips:
-Send a debt validation letter immediately. As soon as you receive the first collection notice from the debt collection agency, send a debt validation letter.
You can find form letters for this purpose online. The debt validation letter will require the debt collector to temporarily cease contacting you and concentrate on producing valid legal proof that you owe the amount in question. If they cannot produce this proof, they can’t collect on the debt.
-Keep a log of all contacts from the debt collection agency. This is especially important in cases of mistaken identity. At first contact, you should tell the debt collector that you are not the individual they want and ask to be removed from their database. If the debt collection company continues to contact you, add each instance to the logbook.
You should also note any of these violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act in your log: calling before 8 am or after 9 am, calling frequently just to annoy you, calling you during the debt validation period, or making baseless threats of legal action.
Hopefully, your debt dispute will be successful and you can move on with your life. However, debt collectors are notoriously stubborn and it is quite likely that you will discover that you are not able to fight them effectively on your own. This is why you should consider getting professional help as soon as possible.