Case Study– Lawsuit against debt collector FirstSource Advantage
Summary of the case
FirstSource Advantage is a debt collector
So the company that we sued in this case was FirstSource Advantage. They are a debt collection agency.
Called consumer multiple times a day
According to the allegations, they repeatedly called the consumer, day after day.
Called family members and other third parties
Not only were they calling multiple times a day, but they were also calling family members and third parties.
Third parties are anyone other than the consumer or the consumer’s spouse.
This means that anyone that isn’t the consumer or their spouse, kids, parents, neighbors, preachers, etc, is considered a third party.
Threatened to continue to call third parties
It wasn’t enough to just call multiple times a day, or to call third parties.
They then said that they were going to continue to call these third parties.
What’s the Problem?
Well, the problem is, you’ve got this debt collector who’s going to keep calling you, your neighbors, and family members. As if that wasn’t enough to just call, they threaten to continue calling.
How do you stop this?
How do you prevent this from happening?
Debt collectors like FirstSource are not allowed to harass you
It’s against the law but unless you do something about it, these abusive debt collectors will continue to abuse consumers.
Debt collectors cannot call third parties, except to get “location information”
They’re not allowed to call anyone other than you or your spouse, except to ask for your name, phone number, place of employment, address, etc.
This is referred to as “location information.”
They’re only allowed to have a small amount of information about you, and they can only ask for that information if they don’t already have it.
We have these cases where the debt collector calls you and leaves a voicemail mentioning your name saying, “I know you’re ignoring me. Since you’re ignoring me, I am going to call your mother, co-worker, etc. ”
They already have your information.
They have no right to call a third party.
When debt collectors harass you and third parties, it is very upsetting
It is definitely upsetting when these debt collectors harass you and third parties.
How do you stop it?
Sue them for money damages.
Money is the only thing that will get their attention.
If you sue them for money damages, they’ll start thinking, “maybe we shouldn’t be doing this because if we get caught, we lose money.”
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, or FDCPA, is a law that governs debt collectors.
The is the law that talks about allowing debt collectors to call only if they do not already have “location information”.
This law also forbids debt collectors from harassing and threatening you.
Alabama State Law
This governs abusive debt collection practices, in particular what is called “Invasion of Privacy”.
If any debt collector calls someone other than you or your spouse, keep careful notes
If you’re dealing with a debt collector who is harassing you, or they’re calling someone other than your spouse, keep careful notes. Take screenshots of the number(s) if they call your cell phone.
Since there are all sorts of phones and different ways to do this, either ask one of your kids 🙂 or you can Google how to take a screenshot if you’re unsure how to do it on your phone.
Documentation is key
Make sure you document these calls.
This is critical.
We fully expect these debt collectors that we sue to destroy evidence, erase records, alter records, and change their notes.
It’s ironic that they will come into court and say, “Judge, we have the notes. This is the gospel truth.”
Then we say, “what about these 17 phone calls you made?”
They will deny that those calls ever took place.
However, we can say, “Judge, here’s our documentation of these phone calls.”
Then the debt collector makes excuses, such as, “Oh, well actually we had a computer glitch, and we just found those 17 phone calls. We were just about to tell the court about those.”
How do you protect yourself?
Document what they do.
Normally the only long term way to stop abuse is to sue the abusive debt collector
If you really want to stop abusive debt collectors, you have to take action and sue them in Federal Court.
Make them pay money for money damages.
You file a public lawsuit so that other people who are abused by them can find out about it and think, “Wait a minute, I’m not the only one that (insert company name) is harassing.”
That motivates others to sue them.
Eventually, it will reach a tipping point for these debt collectors, and they’ll have to say that it’s not worth it to break the law anymore.
Here’s a crazy thought, they’ll actually think to follow the law, and stop abusing consumers.
Eventually they will follow the law.
Contact us if you have any questions
If you have any comments, questions, or concerns, feel free to comment below.
If you have a specific question for us about what a debt collector is doing to you, click the button below and we’ll get right back to you.
You can also call us at 1-205-879-2447, ask for Carolyn, she’ll ask you for some information, and we will happily set up a phone call to tall about any specific questions you may have.
We will gladly get in touch with you.
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