Can I see the contract between the collection lawyer and agency?

“Can I see the contract between the collection lawyer and agency?”

Can I see the contract between the collection lawyer and agency?When you’re dealing with a debt collection lawsuit and a collection lawyer, one question that often comes up is, “Does the collection lawyer have to show me, the consumer, the contract between their firm and the debt collection agency?”

The answer is no.

Here’s where the confusion comes in.

We have the original creditor, who supposedly sells the debt to another company.

Then that company sells the debt to another company, and the sales continue until LVNV,  Midland Funding, or whoever it is sues you.

We, rightfully so, say that they have to prove that they own the debt.

That doesn’t mean that they only have to prove that you owe the debt, it means they have to prove that they own the debt.

“How do they do that?”

Well, they have to trace the debt back to the original creditor.

When the debt is sold to a company, there’s a contract involved.

The debt collection agency has to show the contract, and prove that they own the debt.

The problem with the contract is that, generally speaking, there’s something in there that says, “By the way, there’s no promise that this is accurate, but you’re welcome to buy the debt.”

That’s inconsistent with the collection agency coming into court and saying, “The consumer owes us this money because we own the debt, and that’s the gospel truth!”

Sometimes consumers say that they want to see the proof that the collection lawyer represents the collection company.

Which they’re not entitled to see.

Just like the collection agency isn’t entitled to see the contract between you, the consumer, and the lawyer you hire.

If the lawyer files a Notice of Appearance or a Complaint or an Answer, then you trust that.

When they file this, they’re saying that, “I’m the lawyer that represents the plaintiff.”

You’re not entitled to see the contract between they lawyer and the collection agency.

The collection lawyer represents the debt buyer firm such as Asset, Midland, Portfolio, etc.

The lawyer isn’t the one who is claiming to own the debt.

The real battle is whether or not the collection agency (debt buyer) can prove that they own the debt.

In the cases we’ve handled, they’ve not been able to show evidence that proves they own it.

Maybe they can in your case, however I’ve never seen that happen.  This is the battleground — not whether the collection lawyer has been hired to sue you.  I’ll be happy to help you think through your options on what to do now that you have been sued.

Feel free to ask us any questions you may have.

If you live in the state of Alabama and you have any questions about what we’ve covered in this article, you are more than welcome to contact us.

You can reach us by phone at 1-205-879-2447 and ask for Carolyn, or you can fill out a contact form and we will gladly set up a meeting.

I look forward to talking with you!

Have a great day.

-John G. Watts


  1. Maria says:

    I just reviewed your video. I today left to see a ” Collection Attorney” at a Mediation hearing here in Atlanta. I asked for the signed contract that with my signature showing that I signed up for the debt they claim I owe. He said he doesn’t have to provide that” its irrelevant”. And I said well I would like to see that contracts from the other agencies that sold the debt. He then stated that he doesn’t have to provide that to me. They came in with bill copies and Bill of Sales & Assignment from previous collection agencies. Is that enough to prove a debt? Once I got the answer from him as stated above I ended the convo..and they said they will schedule a trial. Also I saw they had it on my credit report in April of this year…and removed it before this hearing off my credit report when I ran it again. Is their a law with the FDCPA regarding that? Weird they removed it off…just before the hearing.

    • John Watts says:


      Remember that the articles and videos are for folks in Alabama. I don’t know the rules in Georgia so I don’t know what judges require of debt buyers there.

      Get with a consumer protection lawyer in Atlanta and they can help you.

      You can also look at those documents — do the bills of sale line up? Can you trace it from the original creditor to whoever has it now?

      Also the bill of sale will say that it is based on a purchase agreement. The bill of sale is almost always Exhibit A to the purchase agreement. We want to see the purchase agreement because that lays out exactly what was transferred (if anything), the accuracy of the records (normally the purchase agreement says the creditor does not claim the records are accurate — kind of like buying a car “as is’), etc.

      So study the documents you have received and also get with a consumer protection lawyer in Atlanta.

      As far as the credit reporting — no law against them removing it. But it is weird — again chat with your Atlanta attorney about that.

      Best wishes!

      John Watts

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