Wednesday, April 11th, 2012 at
Debt collection industry publication InsideARM reports that Oklahoma’s Bartmann Ethical Debt Collection Practices Act has stalled in the Oklahoma House of Representatives after passing the Senate on a 40-2 vote. As we discussed in an earlier post, the bill seeks to enhance consumer protections by requiring that debt buyers and their employees become licensed, banning collection of debts that are past the statute of limitations, and requiring debt buyers to prove that a consumer owes money and has received notification regarding filing lawsuits, among other provisions.
According to InsideARM, a coalition of debt collection insiders effectively killed the bill in the House Judiciary Committee for this legislative session. The opposition included debt collection industry groups ACA International and DBA International, as well as debt buyers themselves.
Monday, February 27th, 2012 at
In the wake of a nationwide crackdown on rogue debt collection agencies, Oklahoma State Senator Gary Stanislawski has introduced the Bartmann Ethical Debt Collection Practices Act. A press release about the bill states that it seeks to reform laws relating to debt buyers and debt collection, and outlines the ten provisions that form the centerpiece of the legislation.
Among other provisions, the bill would require the licensing of debt buyers and employees; ban collection of debt that is past the statute of limitations; require that debt buyers provide proof that they have notified a consumer of a pending lawsuit; make debt buyers submit proof before filing a lawsuit; enable consumer to record phone calls from debt collectors; and increase penalties for debt collectors and debt buyers who break the law.
Interestingly, the push for the legislation has come from the owner of a debt collection agency. The legislation is named after Bill Bartmann’s father. Bartmann heads the debt collection agency CFS II. According to an article in InsideARM, a debt collection industry newsletter, Bartmann’s move raised eyebrows within the industry – but not for the reasons one would think. According to the article, written by Mark Russell, Bartmann has a less than stellar reputation in the industry. Russell writes, “To call Mr. Bartmann the luckiest man alive for not having to go to prison is probably an understatement. He certainly earned the nickname ‘Teflon Man.’”
Tuesday, June 15th, 2010 at
Phil Mulkins over at Tulsa World recently reminded readers how important it is to know your rights when a debt collection agency comes calling. He outlines many of the important provisions of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, including the restrictions on when a debt collector can call (between 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.). He also notes that a debt collector can’t contact you directly once you have an attorney, nor can they contact you after you’ve sent a cease and desist letter.
Mulkins also points out that, before you make a payment on an old debt, make sure that the statute of limitations hasn’t run out. In Oklahoma, a debt is uncollectible after five years (each state has its own statute of limitations). If you make a payment though, the clock resets.