Tuesday, July 10th, 2012 at
West Virginia Attorney General Darrell McGraw announced that his office had reached a settlement with debt collection agency DP & Associates for engaging in “unlawful and threatening debt collection practices and attempt(ing) to collect debts without a license.”
Attorney General McGraw has been tenacious in going after companies that engage in unethical and illegal debt collection practices. The settlement involves DP & Associates zeroing out West Virginians’ account balances and releasing any judgments against West Virginians.
Actions such as McGraws and those of other state attorneys general underscore the necessity of filing a complaint with your state attorney general when a debt collector crosses the line. Doing so doesn’t take away your right to sue a debt collector for violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, but does lend your voice to those of other consumers to ensure that debt collectors stay on the right side of the law.
Wednesday, April 25th, 2012 at
West Virginia Attorney General Darrell McGraw is vigilant when it comes to debt collection practices. His office recently announced that it filed suit against seven debt collection agencies that are unlicensed in West Virginia after the agencies refused to comply with subpoenas for records of their collection activities. According to a press release issued by McGraw’s office, the AG received complaints that the debt collection agencies “engaged in a wide range of abusive and unlawful debt collection practices, including repeated harassing phone calls, impersonating law enforcement and judicial officers, making false threats that nonpayment will result in arrest or criminal prosecution, and collecting nonexistent debts or debts that have already been paid.”
The debt collection agencies being sued are County Filing Services; Portfolio Investment Financial; Investment Management and Recoveries; Rosenthal, Stein and Associates; Vision Credit Solutions; National Capital Management; and Dorsey Thornton & Associates. Several individuals related to these companies are also named in the suits.
Wednesday, January 18th, 2012 at
West Virginia Attorney General Darrell McGraw announced a settlement in the state’s case against Capital One and its sister companies. The case related to the lender’s credit card practices prior to January 1, 2006. Although the settlement means that Capital One does not have to admit to any wrongdoing, the financial institution is ponying up $13.5 million. According to a press release issued from McGraw’s office, “Capital One agrees to provide $3 million in debt forgiveness to West Virginia consumers, $9.5 million to the State of West Virginia to be used for financial relief for West Virginia consumers, and $1 million to the Attorney General’s office for consumer education and restitution.”
Wednesday, November 18th, 2009 at
West Virginia Attorney General Darrell McGraw’s Consumer Protection Division has sued 17 internet payday lenders, numerous collection agencies and their principals.
According to the official press release from the WV Attorney General’s office, the lawsuits are part of the Division’s efforts to end the “victimization of West Virginia consumers by Internet payday lenders and their collection agencies.”
The Charleston Gazette published an article covering the lawsuits that goes into greater detail than the press release. The first suit names a series of related ventures and individuals that operated websites that made loans with unlawfully high interest rates under the trade name “FFD Resources.”
Consumers who took out payday loans from the defendants ended up paying as much as ten times the principal in interest.
The companies named in the lawsuit had ignored McGraw’s investigative subpoenas and violated a court order prohibiting collection on their unlawful loans in the state.
The second suit requests that the court order four collection agencies, Capital Collections, LLC, Claims Investigators of America, Crime Monitoring Center and Premier Recovery Group, to comply with the Attorney General’s subpoenas and to stop collecting in West Virginia.
We applaud the WV Attorney General’s commitment to consumer protection. Some of the companies sued are notorious violators of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, and are extremely skilled at dodging the law.