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Telling CC's to F-Off..... . .


drivenagain
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So a friend of mine brought this circumstance to my attention recently. His grandparents have about ~7k in unsecured CC debt. They are in their mid 80's and don't own anything of real value. Home is in someone elses name, only income is SS and some retirement $$. It's come to the point where their $500+/mo CC bill is just too much to handle.

 

They can't pay it, but they can't handle the stress from the harassing phone calls from the CC or CA either. They have been paying on this debt for a couple years and paid the original balance a couple times over with interest.

 

I know it's a questionable approach, but is there a way to send a certified letter stating flat out the debtor cannot pay the bill, and notifying the OC/CA it's unacceptable to phone their residence about this debt? Or do you have to legally wait until they send the collection letter?

 

He isn't really concerned about a lawsuit as they don't have anything to garnish or seize.

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So a friend of mine brought this circumstance to my attention recently. His grandparents have about ~7k in unsecured CC debt. They are in their mid 80's and don't own anything of real value. Home is in someone elses name, only income is SS and some retirement $$. It's come to the point where their $500+/mo CC bill is just too much to handle.

 

They can't pay it, but they can't handle the stress from the harassing phone calls from the CC or CA either. They have been paying on this debt for a couple years and paid the original balance a couple times over with interest.

 

I know it's a questionable approach, but is there a way to send a certified letter stating flat out the debtor cannot pay the bill, and notifying the OC/CA it's unacceptable to phone their residence about this debt? Or do you have to legally wait until they send the collection letter?

 

He isn't really concerned about a lawsuit as they don't have anything to garnish or seize.

 

What kind of APR are they paying? $500/mo on a 7k debt seems outrageous.

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What kind of APR are they paying? $500/mo on a 7k debt seems outrageous.

 

I haven't looked at the exact bills, but it's in the upper teens from what I've been told. They have tried their best to pay down the balances, get the rates reduced etc. At this point we (my friend and I) feel it's the only solution is for them to just walk away. But like I said, he doesn't want to submit them to the uncomfortable harassment of the OC/CA collection calls. These poor elderly people can't deal with that and don't really want to spend their time confronting these collections callers.

 

It would be great if he could just send a certified letter stating flat out they will not pay, and act as a C&D to eliminate any irritating calls.

 

Is this out of the question?

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Something does not add up, even at 30% on 7k would be $2100 a year or about $175 month +1% minimum ($70) = $245 or so

 

I'm just going off 2nd hand info, I'll get the actual bills in hand and see what shakes up.

 

At any rate, (this is in CA) is there any recourse in protecting elderly people from this type of collection activity?

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If they ran up the tabs...why shouldn't they pay? If they're on a fixed income and racking up credit card bills they can't afford why should they not have to pay their debts? Because they're old? Sorry, that doesn't fly with me.

 

 

Guess what? It doesn't matter one iota whether it flies with you or not. If you don't have an answer to help the situation, which is what we do here, then don't reply.

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just send the CA's a letter CMMR to cease all communication regarding the debt.

 

problem is, the OC's can just hire another CA.

 

they need to call the banks and come to a payoff arrangement - settled for less than the full amount.

 

or ask for a rule 5000 reage at a rate and payment schedule they can afford.

 

and tell them that if they don't, they will just file BK.

 

change thier phone number in the meantime. get a phone with caller ID.

 

sometimes the OC's inhouse collection dept is the ones who are calling and they are worse than CA's.

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Except for bankruptcy, there's no legal process where an original creditor can be compelled to stop calling about an unpaid debt.

 

Collection agencies can be ordered to "cease and desist" but that often leads to the debt going back to the original creditor, a lawsuit, or starting over with another CA.

Edited by mk_378
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Except for bankruptcy, there's no legal process where an original creditor can be compelled to stop calling about an unpaid debt.

 

Collection agencies can be ordered to "cease and desist" but that often leads to the debt going back to the original creditor, a lawsuit, or starting over with another CA.

 

Just because its not in the FDCPA doesnt mean a remedy doesnt exist. Im sure the debtor has state laws that would protect the debtor from harassing phone calls by the OC.

 

 

Why can't they do a limited C/D to the CA?

 

No need to mess around with a LC&D since the debtor has no way to pay. A letter to the CA stating that the debtor cannot/will not pay the debt and a full C&D would be better...... But the debt will just get kicked around to different CA's and the debtor will have ongoing issues with collection calls. But, if push comes to shove, there is no question about the debtors intent (which than dictates what actions the debt collector should take; ceasing communication).

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If they ran up the tabs...why shouldn't they pay? If they're on a fixed income and racking up credit card bills they can't afford why should they not have to pay their debts? Because they're old? Sorry, that doesn't fly with me.

 

I wish you and your judgmental buddies would get off the forums or keep your comments to yourself.

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Filing BK would be the most advisable step. Either eliminating the debt, or working out a substantial reduction and repayment plan via chapter 13. In no scenario would I reccomend that you advise them to ignore the debt and "walk away". That introduces a whole new level of harassment via collection agencies and the potential risk of lawsuit. While they wouldn't be the best risk for a collector to sue due to their ungarnishable income, you never know. Beyond that, the stress associated with the constant calls, the letters, and the threats of lawsuit might be a bit much for them to handle.

 

You should advise them to speak to a bankruptcy attorney.

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Based on what was posted, it would seem that they're judgment-proof. So, they can just ignore everyone if they like. There are other options also.

 

If they don't want to hear anything ever again including the likely lawsuits, BK may be their best option to get back to enjoying their twilight years without the phone ringing incessantly and mailbox filling up with collection letters.

 

Alternatively if this is only one bank as it sort of sounds to me, paying a lawyer to make a phone call to them explaining that they are judgment-proof but willing to send one final $500 payment if they will accept that as payment in full could be another approach.

 

Finally, if it is a single bank, if they stop making payments and encourage the bank to sue, they could end up with a judgment that is unenforceable and when they demonstrate to the judge and plaintiff that all their income is from SS and retirement they shouldn't have to worry about the bank trying levy their bank account.

 

The primary thing is for these people to know that they have nothing to worry about.

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I noticed you said their house is in someone else's name. Depending on the circumstances (which I obviously don't know) that could possibly be a problem with a BK7. If a court thinks they transferred the house to a relative's name in order to protect it from creditors, this could lead to trouble. Please note, I am not saying they did any such thing. It may be that the circumstances are such that this is a complete non-issue. I just think it's something they need to talk to an attorney about before filing. The attorney could also advise them on whether they are judgement proof and what their options are.

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I can tell you what happened to me, as i was collecting SSD at the time. its sounds scary, but this is how it works, and if your not touchable (like it sounds like they arent). this is the way to go.. especially if they are in their 80's.

 

1) stop payments

2) wait for letter from collection agency

3) respond immediately with a cease communications notice.

4) if they turn it over to another collection agency, respond to them with a CCN. repeat if needed. (note: if you do it fast enough, it wont even show on you CR since the CA will usually dump the debt immediately)

5) accept summons at door from sheriff.

6) let them get a default judgment.

7) they will then send you some papers you have to fill out listing your income/assets etc.

8) send it back, stating you are on SS (not garnishable)

9) you wont hear from them again. 7 years later the judgment will fall off the CR.

 

although my credit is clean, this is what happened to me with SEVERAL debts.

 

 

as a side note:

 

After the above, if they ever wanted to. it would be a good time to move to Florida. In Florida, you can not domesticate a default judgment from another state.. so they cant legally collect it anyway. (found this out after i moved to florida).

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  • 2 weeks later...

Sorry for the delayed reply to everyone who responded. I got my hands on their records and it's pretty bad. 5 cc's, 4 of which are all through crap1, how that happened i'm not sure. At any rate, given their circumstance I think we're going to mail them the "unable to pay" letter, wait for the collection letter and send a C/D. If they file so be it, this couple has bigger things to worry about.

 

The home was legally transferred a couple years ago, so that former asset is safe. (attorney verified)

 

I'll update this as things commence. From their records they have repaid the debt owed 2.2x over in payments and still owe a considerable debt so the moral dilemma is very minimal.

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I noticed you said their house is in someone else's name. Depending on the circumstances (which I obviously don't know) that could possibly be a problem with a BK7. If a court thinks they transferred the house to a relative's name in order to protect it from creditors

 

 

I understand that leins can be placed against a home, but other than that, ins't your home largely untouchable, as long as you're satisfying the terms of your mortgage? Can other creditors really come after your home?

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