We have often sued debt collectors and credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian, Innovis, and Trans Union) for working hand in hand to illegally force consumers to pay money they don’t owe. It may be because the consumer never owed the debt or that the consumer discharged the debt in bankruptcy – but by “parking” an account on the consumer’s credit report, money can be taken from the consumer in order to restore the consumer’s credit report.
According to this press release, Trans Union will now offer the listing of Fair Debt Collection Practices Act cases to collectors to see if the debtors in the collectors’ database have filed suit.
Here is the heart of the press release:
TransUnion announced today that it will utilize data from FDCPA Case Listing Service LLC to provide an added feature for batch records delivered via TransUnion’s Collections Prioritization Engine. The new solution is named FDCPA Case Search and allows TransUnion to alert collectors about accounts that may have previously been involved in FDCPA litigation to assist collectors in determining strategy.
“Consumer lawsuits against collection agencies have become more prevalent and they can prove to be costly for debt buyers and both first- and third-party collectors,” said Scott Carter, group vice president of TransUnion’s collections vertical. “With an annual subscription to TransUnion’s FDCPA service, collectors can utilize the solution for a cost-effective means to help handle debtor accounts that may have potential to result in a legal action.”
According to FDCPA Case Listing Service, 5,383 cases were filed in 2008 against collection agencies in U.S. District Court for alleged violations of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA). This represents a 41 percent increase in FDCPA litigation in 2008 in Federal Court over 2007 case volumes. Case volumes in 2009 are expected to exceed 7,300 for the calendar year.
“This is a great day for agencies, debt buyers, and creditor rights law firms,” said Bill Pinkney, founder of FDCPA Case Listing Service LLC. “So many companies have approached us looking for a completely integrated solution to accompany their current work flow strategy. Our product is a perfect complement to TransUnion’s Collection Prioritization Engine which is why we’ve partnered with them. Given the increases in placement volumes, the ability for agencies, debt buyers, and creditor rights attorneys to accurately and systemically identify these accounts is critical.”
It will be interesting to see what collectors do with this information and it will provide an interesting area for us to conduct discovery in to see if the collector knew our client was represented or how our client was treated differently because he or she had previously filed suit against an abusive collection agency.
If you are dealing with harassing debt collectors and you live in Alabama call us at 205-879-2447 or fill out our website contact sheet or fill out the contact form to your left on this blog. We look forward to helping you and we can also send you our free reports on debt collectors calling third parties and leaving illegal voicemails – just let us know you would like these.