Debt collection schemes are highly popular as roughly 80% of Americans currently live with some type of debt. The various forms of debt include credit card, medical, and student loan debts. They even extend to include utility bills, bank overdraft charges, auto loans, payday loans, and many more. With many people being unaware of the full scope of their debt, they are the prime targets of scammers looking to take advantage of their willingness to settle debt issues.
One Niagara Falls and Kenmore debt collector would use Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) restricted practices to swindle individuals out of hundreds of thousands of dollars monthly.
Debt Collection Scam
Joseph Ciffa, in association with five others, implemented abusive debt collection tactics to collect on paid-off and phony debts. The individuals used what became known as “re-dos” to convince unknowing individuals into making payments on miscellaneous accounts, which in some cases weren’t even theirs.
Ciffa and his associates posed as investigators, government officials, FBI agents, and district attorney’s office appointees. During conversation, they would threaten individuals with jail time and go as far as saying that they would dispatch officers to their home if they did not pay the suggested amount owed. Audio recordings obtained from Ciffa’s cell phone include conversations where he states “We did 370 grand the month of March…We’re on a $300,000 a month pace right now…”
How to Protect Yourself Against Debt Collection Schemes
Schemes of this nature generally only work on those who are unaware of the debts they owe and the status of those accounts. The best way to protect yourself against debt collection schemes is to stay abreast of your financial standing, but more importantly, to be aware of your rights. The TCPA clearly prohibits debt collectors, whether legitimate or fraudulent, from using aggressive language or threatening individuals with jail time, among other things.
Another way you can safeguard your hard earned money is by questioning the claims presented against you. You have the right to request proof of the debt in writing. Debt collectors have five days after contacting you to provide you with documents detailing the origins of the debt. The written notice should include the amount owed, payment history, the original creditor, and options for responding to it.
If you believe that you have been the victim of a debt collection scam, trust the qualified TCPA and FDCPA attorneys at The Law Offices of Jibrael S. Hindi to protect your rights. We are up to date on current debt collection scams as well as invasive tactics commonly used by debt collection companies. Contact us today at 1-844-JIBRAEL for a free case evaluation. You don’t pay a dime until Jibrael wins for you!