Houston-based bankruptcy and consumer law firm Busby & Associates wants to educate consumers about recent aggressive debt collection practices of debt buyers that purchase “zombie” debts and try to collect on them.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 25, 2008
(Houston, Texas) “This is a real problem,” says Eric Southward, an attorney with the firm, “with real implications for people.” According to him, large national debt buyers are purchasing debts from years ago and then hiring collection agencies to collect on those debts. Consumers are receiving harassing phone calls about debts they didn’t even know they owed. They are called “zombie” debts because they have been dormant for so many years and then just rise up one day to haunt you. As Eric says, “The debt collectors are very aggressive and most consumers don’t know their rights. They don’t know they can request proof of that debt. They also don’t know that debt collectors have rules they must follow when collecting debts.”
Worse yet, many of these debt buyers are suing consumers for these zombie debts. As Eric explains, “What most people don’t know is that in Texas, you cannot be sued on a debt that you haven’t paid on for over four years. We have innocent consumers paying lawsuit judgment when they don’t legally have to.” Eric says that there are consumer laws out there designed to protect consumers, but most people aren’t aware of them. These consumer laws include the Federal Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), the Texas Debt Collection Act (TDCA), and the Texas Unfair Trade Practices Act (DTPA).
Busby & Associates sent Attorney Eric Southward to a FDCPA boot camp in Nashville, Tennessee, last month. The intensive three-day camp covered how to use the FDCPA and other consumer laws to protect consumers who are being harassed by debt collectors and being sued by zombie debt buyers. “It really opened my eyes,” Eric says of the class, “I saw and heard some of the worst examples of abusive debt collection tactics in my life.” Eric said that it surprised him that even with all the State and Federal regulations designed to prevent these kinds of abuses that debt collectors were still violating the laws. And according to him, it has just gotten worse with national debt buyers purchasing old debt account.
Busby & Associates will fight for consumers who feel their rights have been violated by debt collectors and zombie debt buyers. Busby & Associates will pursue collection agencies that violate the law and will represent consumers being sued by zombie debt buyers. To help consumers understand their rights, their website article “10 Things You Need to Know About Debt Collection” gives consumers a quick overview of what debt collectors can and cannot do.
Busby & Associates is a full-service consumer law firm that provides bankruptcy, debt settlement, and debt negotiation services as well debt defense representation and actions against debt collectors.
To learn more about our firm or to schedule a consultation, please call toll free at (866) 912-9832 or visit us on the web at www.busby-lee.com
Contact: Michael G. Busby, Jr.
Busby & Associates
Attorney & Counselors at Law, P.C.
2909 Hillcroft Suite 350
Houston, TX 77057
(713) 974-1181 fax