Sunday, May 11, 2014

Consumers can fight back against debt buyers

The Business section of the Washington Post has a story by Danielle Douglas about companies that buy debt and then sue consumers, often without adequate documentation of the debt, link here. In print, the story is called “One man’s stand against debt collectors”.  Online, it is more specific as to villain: “Taking on the country’s biggest debt buyer, Midland funding”, link here.  The hero of the news story, the “David” against Goliath, is Leoncio Paz.

The article discusses the lack of uniformity among states as to the documentation required to file suits, with Virginia among the weaker states and even inconsistent among courts within the commonwealth. It sounds like a good political issue for a governor or legislator running for office to take on.

I got dinged in 2000 by a company that had bought a questionable old debt for $125 back from 1981, and it had ballooned to $660.  I wasn’t sure the debt was valid.  Today, I would demand proof that it really existed.