When Zombie Debt Calls . . . .

If you were on AMC TV’s “The Walking Dead” show, you would call Rick, when zombie debt collectors call

Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes - The Walking Dead _ Season 5B, Key Art - Photo Credit: Courtesy of AMC
Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes – The Walking Dead _ Season 5B, Key Art – Photo Credit: Courtesy of AMC

you.

OK, in the real world, not an option.

Brian J. O’Connor wrote about the problem this month in the Detroit News:

It works like this: Lenders try to collect bad debt for just so long, then write it off as a loss. They sell that debt to buyers and other intermediaries, sometimes for pennies on the dollar. The debt buyers then package and parcel out the old debt to collection agencies, skip tracers and specialized debt-collection law firms that do nothing else. There’s even a name for old debts that keep coming back this way: zombie debt.

Yup, its out there.

Don’t think it won’t happen to you, just because you pay all your debts on time.

You have heard about identity theft?  All the data breaches, even (especially) the government employee records that are being hacked?

Remember, the basis of the business model of zombie debt collection is, DO NOT PAY ATTENTION TO DETAIL.

As a consumer attorney who helps people fight zombie debt, my frustration is finding these SOBs.

Not the ones who actually file a lawsuit, then we at least have a company name and contact information.

Now the zombie debt collectors use untraceable numbers.

Sometimes only for a few weeks.

If you can find a brick and mortar office, it is a  Mail Boxes Et Cetera or some other P. O. Box.

The names they use when they call you ARE FAKE!

So is their script.  They are lawyers/a lawfirm.  They are processing a warrant for your arrest.  UNLESS you pay them by 4:00 p.m.

You cannot call Rick Grimes, what do you do when zombie debt collectors call?

First, NEITHER GIVE NOR VERIFY PERSONAL INFORMATION.

Especially social security numbers or bank account info.

Do not verify the phone #, the address, or anything else.

Say you can take a message for whoever they are looking for.

Like a normal message, ask for the name of the person calling, what it is regarding, which is:

the name of the caller, the company name, address, and who this debt was originally owed to.

Even though the responses will most likely be false.

Get a call back number.  Ask for written verification.  Of everything, to be sent to the person they are calling.

I am still working on figuring out the best way to handle this, because, I need to find the zombie debt collector bad guy to file any lawsuit, FDCPA or otherwise.

I will update as I come up with more/better strategies.

 

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