The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the New York Attorney General’s Office filed a lawsuit against two entities involved in a phantom debt scam. The lawsuit includes debt sellers, debt brokers, buyers, and sellers from Hylan Asset Management and Worldwide Processing Group.
The complaint alleges that the defendants violated the FTC Act by selling fake debt portfolios and contacting consumers to collect a fabricated debt. They are also charged with violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) by using deceptive practices to mislead consumers into believing they owed a debt.
Prosecutors claim that Hylan knew that some of their portfolios were fraudulent, but willingly sold them anyway. The “debt” claims they purchased were from Hirsch Mohindra and Joel Tucker – two known scammers who were previously sued by the FTC.
Worldwide Processing Group also engaged in unlawful collection practices by collecting on the debt they received from Hylan. Worldwide repeatedly harassed and threatened consumers to collect the debt, and failed to provide consumers with verified notices about the debt.
Unlawful Debt Collection Practices
As a consumer, you have rights regarding debt collection practices. Understanding the rules outlined in the FDCPA can protect you from harmful tactics used by debt collectors and seek legal action.
The FDCPA has explicit rules regarding what debt collectors can and cannot do, and the steps you can take to verify your debt. Despite this, many debt collectors choose to take advantage of consumers and violate the rules anyway.
Some of the most common practices debt collectors use in violation of the FDCPA include:
- Using threatening or violent language
- Exaggerating or lying about the amount owed
- Failure to violate the debt
- Failing to disclose their identity
- Calling you too early in the morning or too late at night
- Using an autodialing system to contact you without your consent
This list is not exhaustive. There are over 200 debt collection rules according to the FDCPA, and each violation could be grounds for a lawsuit. Each year the FTC receives thousands of complaints about violations of the FDCPA, but these allegations are rarely brought to justice.
Phantom debt collection and other unlawful practices can have severe consequences for both your finances and your well-being. It’s important to recognize when a violation has occurred, and talk to an experienced consumer law attorney immediately.
The Law Offices of Jibrael S. Hindi has litigated hundreds of cases on behalf of consumers who were wronged by debt collectors. Our expert FDCPA attorneys are willing to take on even the most intimidating collection agencies to fight for the justice you deserve. A successful FDCPA case can award you up to $1,000 in financial compensation. Don’t let debt collectors get away with taking advantage of you. Contact our office today at 1-844-JIBRAEL for a free case evaluation. Remember, there are no attorney fees unless you get paid.