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Hi Ray,

When I went to refinance my home, the bank found a judgment against me on courthouse records. The case went to court, the court found against me, but I was never even notified of the court hearing. LVNV says they served me papers that my 17 yr old daughter accepted, but neither I or my daughter have any recollection of this. There is no signature on the paperwork that LVNV presented. I thought it was for a Master Card debt that has been paid and wrote to BBB, but after getting the response from LVNV, it turns out to be an old Wal-Mart credit card (GE Capital) and they are saying the balance is thousands more than what any original balance would have been. I have not acknowledged owing the debt, as I'm not even sure that I do. LVNV contends the present balance due is $3719, but even the original amount of $1757 is way more than any actual debt I would have had. Here's what LVNV wrote in response to my complaint to BBB.
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This letter is in response to your correspondence dated May 21, 2013 regarding the above referenced account. LVNV Funding, LLC (“LVNV”) currently owns the account number ending in 0140. Resurgent Capital Services L.P. (“Resurgent”) is the servicer of the account owned by LVNV.  The account was previously sold by General Electric Capital Corporation (“GE”) on or about September 26, 2007. As of the date of this communication, the account balance is $3,719.41.  Please review the following account information:

1.This account originated on August 14, 2005 with GE and was opened with Wal-Mart.
2.This account charged off on November 3, 2006 with a balance of $1,757.05.
3.No payments have been received on this account since Resurgent started servicing it in September 2007.
4.Enclosed is a copy of the judgment that was granted in favor of LVNV on April 16, 2009, case number 2009SC 00133.

Resurgent utilizes third party collection agencies and/or attorneys to collect on its behalf. This account was placed with Blatt, Hasenmiller, Leibsker & Moore (“BHL&M”) on October 28, 2008 for collections. Due to the nature of this complaint, we requested all account documentation from BHL&M for a thorough investigation, as their office obtained this judgment on behalf of LVNV.  

In her complaint, Ms. XXX mentions that she did not receive the paperwork prior to this judgment being granted.  Upon review, a summons detailing the nature and date of the proceedings were personally served to Ms. XXX on April 16, 2009 at the same address that she listed on this complaint.  The documents were signed for and received by XXXX XXXX, who is listed as Ms. XXX's daughter.  A copy of the affidavit of service is enclosed for your reference.  

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Is this debt past the statue of limitations?
Is it considered an open account or unwritten contract?
Do I go by Illinois statutes or by the state where the company is located?
Are the fees allowed?
How do I find out the amount of the original debt or if there even was an original debt?
Is there any way to get the judgment off my record?
Please ...anything you can do to help me will appreciated as I am unable to refinance my home until this is taken care of and off my record. I don't have the funds to pay the amount in question.
Thank you in advance.

Answer
Well, the bad news is, the debt was not out of statute at the time of the judgement.  The fees and charges would be set by the original contact creating the credit card agreement. These debt buying outfits are usually careful about not adding any extra fees. I really wish your daughter had given you the summons so this would not have been a surprise to you.  The only way the judgment can be lifted is for it to be paid.  My best advice to you is for for you to offer to settle the debt.  Usually these companies will settle a debt like this for around 50%, depending on your circumstances.  That would be my suggestion to you.  If they do agree to a settlement, DO NOT PAY A DIME UNTIL THEY HAVE PUT THE OFFER IN WRITING.

I hope you will find this information helpful and I wish I had better news. If I have missed anything or you need more information, please follow up with me in another question. I wish you the best with this.

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Ray A Miller

Expertise

I am qualified to answer questions on the following subjects: FDCPA, FCRA and HIPAA as well as medical collections, general collections and collection agency related issues. I trained these subjects at a nationwide collection agency and customer service call center and audited around 150 representatives for compliance to the laws. I have been in the Collections Industry for over 30 years. I feel that everyone deserves to be treated fairly and with compassion and that is the way I trained collectors. Even though I worked for a Collection Agency, I get great satisfaction in helping those who have been mistreated or in need of help with these confusing issues.

Experience

I was the Compliance Administrator with a nationwide collection agency and customer service call center-I have trained hundreds of collectors on the above referenced topics. I have been in the medical collections industry for over twenty years and research these topics on a daily basis.

Organizations
ACA International

Education/Credentials
Some college ACA Certified Collection Specialist

Past/Present Clients
I am retired due to medical conditions and spend a good deal of time keeping current on collection issues.

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