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Questions Answered by David B. Levin
2 Answers | Asked in Collections for Georgia on
Q: I once had Sprint serviced back in 2008, I left that phone company to go to another and I still owed a balance

That phone company is still on my credit because they updated the late paymentsto the credit bureau so does the SOL from the last date I paid or the date which they updated

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Oct 4, 2015

The 7-year limit on reporting delinquent debt begins on the date that the account becomes delinquent and is never current again. So, the answer to your question is probably "neither," but would be that point in time slightly later than your last payment when you failed to make a payment when due... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Virginia on
Q: I am getting calls from a debt collector repeatedly, I got one call before getting their letter since then, they are

calling everyday, harassing me, I know I have 30 days to dispute, But the FDCPA states they cannot call me repeatedly. I feel they are in violation, they have not validated the debt, but calling every day, am I right? They cannot harass me daily under the FDCPA by repeatedly calling.

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Sep 28, 2015

It's not clear from your question whether you have disputed the debt (which would preclude further collection action until the debt had been validated), but you are correct that the FDCPA prohibits harassment through repeated telephone calls. If these calls are coming to your cell phone, there may... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Wisconsin on
Q: How can I get relief or exempt from the garnishment of my wages?

The amount that is being taken out biweekly makes it impossible to pay rent and feed three children. I'm the only one in the household with a income. I'm extremely concerned for the safety and wellbeing of my family.

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Sep 14, 2015

The amount that can be withheld from your paycheck to satisfy a judgment is set by state and federal law. Although there are some exceptions, in Wisconsin that limit is typically 20% of your disposable income. You may want to talk with a bankruptcy attorney about whether Chapter 7 might be a good... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Michigan on
Q: Lowes is attempting to sue my husband for nonpayment for a hotwater heater we never took delivery on. Should we fight?

We ordered a hot water heater from Lowes Home Improvement then found out it wouldn't work for our house hold. We ended up getting a hot water heater from a different, and more local company. We called to cancel the order, they said it would take several weeks to get our money back. We aren't... Read more »

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Sep 14, 2015

It's not clear from your question whether you have in fact been sued or the creditor has simply threatened to file suit. You also don't say whether or not you've discussed the issue with Lowe's and whether they acknowledge that you did not take delivery on the water heater. It would be worth your... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Bankruptcy for Kentucky on
Q: If I was discharged from Ch. 7 in 2010 can I be billed 5 yrs later for a utility??

I filed Ch 7 in 2009 and was discharged in 2010. I recently got a statement from a utility company that said that I owed an outstanding balance from a date prior to my even filing bankruptcy. I was given the option to pay the balance or have my service disconnected so I unfortunately had to pay... Read more »

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Sep 14, 2015

If the debt was discharged in bankruptcy, later collection action on that debt violates the bankruptcy discharge order. Creditors who violate the discharge order may be sanctioned by the bankruptcy court. Talk to a consumer lawyer in your areas who handles bankruptcy discharge violations to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Texas on
Q: I had a default judgment 18 months ago for a credit card I did not pay, but they did not contact me anymore, what this

Means? What do I have to do? Thanks for your time

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Sep 2, 2015

A judgment in Texas is typically valid for ten years and can be renewed. There are a few options for addressing a judgment when the creditor is not attempting to collect. For example, some people simply wait until they hear from the creditor or a collection agency. This may buy time, but also may... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Mississippi on
Q: I and family members have been harassed by Pinnacle Asset Group about a 14 year old debt.

They scared me into authorizing a direct withdrawal of $2400 from my checking account on Sept. 1, 2015 to avoid a civil lawsuit. What options do I have? I have since researched them and several complaints have been made against them.

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Aug 26, 2015

Talk to a consumer protection lawyer in your area. Depending on a number of variables such as how they "scared you," whether or not the collection agency misrepresented the legal status of the debt and the actions they could take, etc., you may have a claim under the Fair Debt Collection Practices... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Georgia on
Q: Garnishment and GA Statute Law

I missed court in 2005 and have had repeated garnishments due to a breach I'm payment plan. I'm not working and I'm a student. When I called the collection agency said they world garnish. At this point the statute has run out. What do I need to do and who do I prove it to?

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Aug 24, 2015

I'm not sure exactly what you mean when you say that "the statute has run out". I'm assuming that you're saying that the judgment is no longer enforceable. If that is the case and if you are very certain that the period during which the creditor can renew the judgment has also expired, you may be... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Texas on
Q: My mom has a judgemenu against her for a past case. She settled for a lesser amount, however they never filed the

Settlement paperwork, now they are trying to collect again, we have records of the transaction. Do they have any legal right to pursue her, if so what are my possible courses of action? I feel like this is extreme negligence on their part, because not only are they saying they never received... Read more »

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Aug 24, 2015

This isn't a question that can be answered in this type of forum. There are too many variables and not enough information. However, it would be a good idea to take your documentation to a consumer lawyer for review. Depending upon exactly what occurred, whether the debt has been sold, whether she's... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Massachusetts on
Q: How do I make collections agencies and a local law firm STOP calling me? They refuse to correct a phone number error.

For more than 15 years, I have received phone calls for a person who has never lived at my address. I researched the person's name and discovered they have a very similar phone number (a simple transposition of 2 numbers). These calls have come from 7 different collections agencies and one... Read more »

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Aug 18, 2015

Talk to a consumer protection lawyer in your area. Though I can't draw any conclusions here, it is possible that the agency or agencies contacting you are in violation of one or more consumer protection statutes, and you may be entitled to damages in addition to putting a stop to the calls.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections and Personal Injury for New Jersey on
Q: How can i sign over awards from personal injury suit to my adult child to aviod debt collectors from taking my money ???

Im recieving letters from collection agencies regarding 20 yr old debt i wasnt even aware i owed

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Aug 18, 2015

Before you start thinking about how to manage your assets, talk to a local consumer lawyer about the debt in question. Very few types of debt will survive for twenty years, and the debt may well be uncollectable (and, thus, no threat to your assets). It's even possible, depending on the nature of... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law for Pennsylvania on
Q: Can a credit bureau deem all your correspondence to them as suspicious and avoid acting?

Experian sent me a letter, in response to my certified letter of dispute, claiming that my letter was suspicious and being disregarded. When I called and told them it was not suspicious, they told me if I sent more letters, they would also be deemed suspicious, and not acted upon. Can they do... Read more »

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Aug 7, 2015

You should seriously consider contacting a consumer protection attorney. While I can't assess the case for you in this forum, it is possible that you have a claim for violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act.

*David Levin is the Partner in charge of UpRight Law's consumer rights...
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1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Louisiana on
Q: I have been served papers that I missed a court date from a bill collector. Can I go to jail for this?

I'm not working at the present time. My bills have fallen behind.

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Jul 27, 2015

You can't go to jail for not having the money to pay a bill collector, but you can be arrested for violating a court order. Even if you don't have the money to pay the debt, failing to appear in court is not a good solution.

If you don't understand the paperwork you received, please...
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1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Massachusetts on
Q: Can a collection agency have you arrested?

Guy on the phone says that if I don't pay, they will send the police to my house.

I can't pay. What can I do?

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Jul 27, 2015

Contact an attorney. A collection agency that threatens you with arrest if you don't make payment arrangements with them or pay a civil debt in full is in violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and possibly state consumer protection law as well. A local consumer protection attorney can... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Virginia on
Q: if u get a certified letter for a debt to appear n court do u have to apprear
David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Jul 27, 2015

Failing to appear is generally a big mistake. If a lawsuit has just commenced against you, failure to appear may result in a default judgment being entered against you. The judgment might include attorney fees and court costs in addition to the amount the creditor says that you owe, and the... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Indiana on
Q: Can i be put in jail for a delinquent university account that has been sent to collections?

It's sent to collections

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Jul 23, 2015

Failure to pay a debt is not a crime; it's a civil matter. If you're unable to come to an agreement, the typical remedies are a lawsuit, wage garnishment, garnishment of assets such as bank accounts. A debt collector who threatens someone with arrest for not paying a civil debt is breaking the law... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Consumer Law for Illinois on
Q: How can I stop phone calls from collection agency?

They call every day on my cell and the voice mail message is just a recording saying their name and to hold for a very important message.

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Jul 23, 2015

A debt collector must stop most contact if the debtor tells the company in writing to stop contacting him/her. There are some exceptions. For example, a debt collector who has been instructed to cease contact may contact you to let you know that they are about to take a specific action, such as... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Texas on
Q: can a person go to jail for a $2200 loan?
David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Jul 22, 2015

A civil debt (such as as credit card debt, medical bill, etc.) is a civil matter. That's not a criminal issue, and a debt collector who falsely threatens to have a debtor arrested is in violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and may be liable for damages.

That said, failure to...
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1 Answer | Asked in Collections on
Q: If I die leaving no assets other than household, are my children responsible for credit card debt?

Widowed, receiving CCP and OAS

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Jul 22, 2015

Adult children are typically not responsible for credit card debt of a deceased parent. There are a few exceptions, such as if one of the children is an authorized user on the credit card or has made actual purchases using the credit card.

However, the estate of the deceased is liable for...
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1 Answer | Asked in Collections for Georgia on
Q: I verbally agreed to owning a debt and made a payment. Can the collections sue me?

Here are the details. I opened this credit card in Mass. I now live in Ga. I got a couple letters threatening to put a warrant out for my arrest if i did not call and negotiate with them. I was scared and stupid so i called verbally agreed that it was my debt, and made a payment. I now just checked... Read more »

David B. Levin
David B. Levin answered on Jul 22, 2015

There are a couple of different issues in play here. As Julie stated, the fact that your credit report is showing the account closed does not impact your liability for the debt.

That said, there are limitations on the actions a collection agency can take that you should be aware of. For...
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