Indiana Consumer Law Group/The Law Office of Robert E. Duff occasionally is contacted by a consumer who has just found a debt collection account on their credit report that is not theirs. We can help.
There are many ways these situations can be handled, but in my experience the best way to handle them, as long as you are sure the debt is not yours, is to file an FDCPA lawsuit against the debt collector. It is a violation of the FDCPA for a debt collector to attempt to collect a debt that is not owed. Putting a collection account on your credit report is collection activity, i.e., an attempt to collect a debt, and if the debt is not owed the debt collector has violated the FDCPA.
We represent the consumer in filing an FDCPA lawsuit against the collection agency. Typically (of course we cannot guarantee a particular result in any particular case, all cases are different), these cases are settled within a month or two when the collection agency agrees to delete the collection account, pay our client $1,000 statutory damages, refund our client’s $350 filing fee and pay our client’s attorney fees. In exchange, typically, the collection agency requires our client to sign a settlement agreement/release and dismiss the FDCPA lawsuit with prejudice (permanently). Because our client’s objective was just to get this erroneous account off their credit report, the client is pleased with the result.
If you have found a debt collection account on your credit report that you don’t owe, please submit this form and we will contact you.