I have been looking through the forum and have seen this issue come up a few times.
To make a long story short, I paid a marketing company to do internet marketing, web design, email automation, social media management and a couple more things. They charged me $3560/month which I paid for 2 months, and they gave me a discount after month 3 to $2,560 because I introduced them to someone who could help them. I paid a total of $9,680 to them over the span of 3 months, and after the 3rd month things weren't working out because they weren't holding up their end of the contract. They completed about 1/3 of the work that was outlined in the contract on a monthly basis and their excuse was "we were gathering content for you before updating your social media accounts, and building up all your emails to be sent out." They were supposed to make 20 posts per month, set up all my automated email campaigns and they didn't even come close to doing any of that, the website updates they made were filled with misspellings and pictures weren't even and it wasn't optimized for mobile. We ended up parting ways and I contacted my bank and disputed only half of the total amount charged ($4,840) even though I could have gotten back 100% of it, I was trying to be fair because I know the guy has to pay staff an they did spend time with me and 1/3 of the work was completed on their end. My bank ended up siding with me, I have the whole string of emails, text messages, and pictures of our site outlining everything and all of our discussions to prove they did not hold up their end of the contract.
A month or so later I get a letter in the mail from their attorney threatening to sue me for the remaining balance, I just ignored it because it was a scare tactic. Now I am getting calls from a collection agency saying I have an unpaid invoice... I got the letter in the mail from them and trying to figure out do I respond to them with a DV letter? I know they don't care about any proof you have to invalidate the debt and will go based off what their client is providing them, I just don't want to give them any information that could validate the debt and then they report it to my credit. Do I need to get my attorney involved in this? The company trying to send me to collections is a very small marketing company, he works for himself and was in a marketing group that I was in so I trusted him. We have a signed contract but there is no personal guarantee, he doesn't have my social or DOB, and he didn't complete what was outlined in his contract for services he was supposed to be rendering.
If I do send a DV letter to the collection agency, what will the next steps be after they respond back with the contract, the amount they claim to be valid and owed? I could respond back to that with all the proof and evidence he voided his contract, as well as my bank siding with me but I'm sure they will still view that as not sufficient and put it on my credit. (Card I used was from discover).
If it does go to my credit should I dispute it with each bureau, and send them all the proof and my bank awarding me the money back?