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Know Your Enemy: Midland Credit

August 12, 2013 by  
Filed under Blogs, Collection Agencies

by: .

midland collections

Midland Credit Management (MCM) also known as Midland Funding and MCM Capital is a subsidiary of Encore Capitol Group, Inc.  Midland is a collection agency which purchases portfolios of defaulted consumer debt from banks, credit unions, utility providers, as well as many others at a severe discount.

In 2011, Encore Capital paid $386.9 million, to purchase $11.7 billion in debt. What does this mean to you? Midland buys debt at a 96.7% discount, so your $1000 collection was bought for $33.

In 2013, Midland Funding was fined for using illegal collection tactics to collect funds from 1.44 million consumers. They were ordered to pay $5.2 million to approximately 299,000 litigants, or $17.38 per person.

In response, Midland Funding created a “Consumer Bill of Rights” which includes:

  • Contacting consumers in a timely and effective manner, resolving accounts quickly and honestly, and ensuring collection practices that promote settlement and preserve dignity;
  • Establishing forgiveness and hardship guidelines, including the cessation of collection efforts when permanent hardship is demonstrated;
  • Suspending interest or fees when a consumer is making timely payments on an established plan;
  • Implementing the fair and reasonable use of litigation to resolve an outstanding obligation, and seeking to avoid litigation whenever possible; and
  • Committing to not resell defaulted consumer accounts in the normal course of business.

Sounds nice, but how does this bill of rights actually protect you? It doesn’t. All of the points outlined in the bill of rights are for the purpose of being more efficient and  effective at collecting debt and maximizing profits. Please keep that in mind when dealing with Midland Credit collection agency.

The Solution for West Asset Management Collection

Credit Firm.net has helped thousands of their clients delete Midland Credit Management and Midland Funding collection accounts from their credit reports.  If you have been contacted by Midland or have a Midland Collection Account reporting on your credit report, contact CreditFirm.net to improve your credit.

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 5 days.

Support. Award winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

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AFNI

June 4, 2013 by  
Filed under Blogs, Collection Agencies

by: Michael Creditfirm.
afni collections

HISTORY

Founded in 1936, Afni Collection Agency got its’ start in Bloomington, Illinois under the name H.A. Slaven’s Collection Bureau.  In 1976, the company was purchased by Earl Anderson who changed the name of the company to Anderson Financial Network, Inc.  9 years later, in 1985, Anderson was joined by Bruce Griffin as new general manager, and the two began opening satellite offices for the collection agency around the entire country. All of the satellite offices reported to one central main office, which was located in Bloomington, IL. The company was later renamed Afni, Inc to shorten its’ name from Anderson Financial Network, Inc.

Afni is a full service collection agency which means that they are not only a debt buyer, but also a third party debt servicer.

Afni Contact Information

Phone number: 1-877-403-0670
Fax: (309)-828-0931
Address:
PO Box 3427
Bloomington, IL 61702-3427

Afni Complaints

Afni has a history of complaints for everything from intimidation and harassment  to debt re-aging. The BBB has  closed over 900 complaints for Afni over the last 3 years. Although there have been several complaints against Afni’s collection procedures and billing practices, they have yet to be fined or punished by the federal government (FTC or the CFPB).

Afni typically handles a lot of accounts for local towns, counties, and states. (Collections for parking/speeding tickets, toll violations, unpaid fines). Afni even handles collections for the IRS.

Knowing all of that, it’s not very difficult to see why the federal government has yet to act on any of the thousands of complaints to state attorney general offices.

Solution for Afni Collection Accounts

Credit Firm.net has helped thousands of their clients delete Afni collection accounts from their credit reports.  If you have been contacted by Afni or have a Afni Collection account reporting on your credit report, it will be in your best interest to learn your consumer protection laws, like the FDCPA, in order to keep Afni honest.

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 5 days.

Support. Award winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

CreditFirm.net Review

How to Negotiate with Debt Collectors

April 9, 2013 by  
Filed under Blogs, Collection Agencies

by: .

Debt-SettlementGetting behind on your bills can be suffocating, but getting back out of debt and paying off your creditors may seem like an insurmountable task.

Negotiating with creditors doesn’t have to be as stressful as it may seem.

Follow these 5 rules when setting your debt.

1. Create an Action Plan

Before you even begin contacting your creditors and negotiating a settlement, you must have a clear and concise plan of how you intend to repay the debt (lump sum or payment plan). Gather up all of your debt and figure out how much available money you have each month to pay toward your debt. Then divide that total amount into each individual account allocating a specific maximum amount you can afford to pay for each debt monthly. This will help you understand the limits of what you can and cannot afford to pay.

2. Ask for a Lower Interest Rate

Many people don’t know this, but collection agencies are allowed to charge you interest on the debt which they hold. This interest rate may not seem like much but can quickly double or even triple the total amount due in a very short period of time.  If you opt for a debt repayment play, ask your creditors to reduce or even eliminate their interest rate, thereby saving you money and allowing you to become debt free faster.

3. Low-Ball Offer

Start the negotiating process off with a lowball offer you know they probably wont take. If you have $2,000 in debt and the debt collector wants $1600, offer $100 to settle the account in full. Although the collection agency probably won’t bite on that offer, they will be more willing to reduce their settlement offer considering the huge gap.

3. Mention Bankruptcy

While negotiating for the best settlement option possible, be sure to mention Bankruptcy to the debt collectors as one of your options if you cannot workout a deal with them. Collection agencies paid money for your debt, and considering no one likes losing money, they may be more likely to take a lower offer from you instead of not getting anything at all.

5. Say No

Rejecting the collection agencies offers and hanging up a few times will dissipate any sense of urgency on your part and make the collection agency take the first step toward reducing the settlement amount. Saying no will give you the upper hand in the negotiating process and put you in control of the amount of money you settle the account for.

Bonus:

Tell the collection agency that you only have a certain amount of money toward paying off your debt. (Don’t tell them what that amount is.) But do tell them that if you cannot work out a deal with them, that you appreciate their time and help, but you allocated a certain amount of money toward paying off your collections, and if they can’t accept your offer, you will contact one of your other collection accounts and offer them the money.

Negotiating with collection agencies may be challenging, but if done correctly, it is possible to save a lot of money. Good Luck!

 

Why Choose CreditFirm.net?

Assurance. Our Credit Repair process was developed by experienced attorneys.

Speed. Documents are typically processed and sent out for investigation within 5 days.

Support. Award winning customer service guarantees your satisfaction.

CreditFirm.net Review

3 Ways to Stop Collection Calls

December 4, 2012 by  
Filed under Blogs, Collection Agencies

stop collection agency callsFalling behind on your bills usually results in a plethora of collection calls. Initially, these calls tend to be kind customer service reps giving you friendly reminders to pay your bills.  But very quickly the customer service representatives can become belligerent and harassing, demanding that you pay your bills or else threatening legal action if you don’t.

 

 

Here are 3 ways to Stop Collection Calls

one Ask the collection agency representative to provide his/her identity and their agency’s address. Send a letter to the collection agency telling them to stop calling. It is illegal for a collection agency to call you either at home or work once you give them written notice to stop.
two Recording the phone conversation can also help you to stop collection calls. Inform the collection agency representative at the beginning of the call that you are taping the call as evidence for filing a formal complaint with the State Attorney General and the Federal Trade Commission.
three Setup phone call filtering. Most phone companies offer “anonymous call rejection”. If the calling party is not displaying caller id information, your phone will not ring. Instead the calling party will be confronted by a phone company system that will prompt the caller to leave a very short voice message which is subsequently played to you giving you a chance to accept the call. This will weed out a great many collections calls.

 

Know Your Rights:

  • Even if you owe a debt, a collector cannot use abusive language. Under FDCPA law, a collector is not allowed to make any kind of threat or use abusive language. Violating this law opens the collection agency to fines from the FTC and a law suit from you.
  • Debt collectors cannot call you before 8:00 a.m. or after 9:00 p.m.
  • State and Federal laws do not allow debt collectors to talk about your debt to anyone without your permission. Debt collectors are also prohibited from contacting you while you are at work.

CFPB to Oversee Collection Agencies

November 1, 2012 by  
Filed under Blogs, Collection Agencies

cfpbThe United State’s consumer finance watchdog agency (The CFPB) will now monitor the day-to-day operations of collection agencies and junk debt buyers.

This is the first time that collection agencies’ day to day business practices have been subjected to federal scrutiny since the 1980’s.

This expands the oversight of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The agency was set up after the financial crisis of 2008 to protect consumers from misleading marketing, unfair fees, and other harmful practices.

Collection agencies have long been criticized for unethical business practices like calling employers, friends, or relatives of debtors and disclosing private financial information in order to embarrass the debtor into paying the debt. Some of the practices violate federal laws like the FDCPA which provide protection against harassment and intimidation.

About 30 million Americans have, on average, $1,500 of debt that is in collections. That information is then reported to credit bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion), which lowers consumer’s credit scores.  Collection agencies have the power to affect a person’s ability to finance a car, home, or even get a job.

The CFPB already supervises mortgage companies, private student lenders and payday lenders. Those industries were placed under its watch in the 2010 overhaul of financial laws, which established the agency.

Collection agencies are a part of the second group, after the credit bureaus, that the agency is choosing to include in its supervision program. The CFPB started overseeing the credit bureaus last month.

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