The results of an ARM operational survey conducted by insideARM revealed a collection industry with major operational and strategic differences based on size. While the vast majority of collection agencies made use of some similar technologies (taking check payments by phone, for example) and had concerns about certain external forces that have recently emerged (CFPB regulation), when we broke the results out by company size, some real differences began to show.
The consumer dispute triggers a well-defined required process in the accounts receivable management industry. But certain recent developments may prompt collection agencies to look into their workflow with more attentive eyes.
Debt buyer Encore Capital Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: ECPG) announced late Thursday that it has closed its acquisition of rival Asset Acceptance Capital Corp. The company said that all operating subsidiaries of Asset Acceptance are now part of Encore Capital Group. Asset Acceptance’s stock, NASDAQ ticker symbol AACC, will now be delisted.
A bill that would require medical debts to be removed no longer than 45 days after the account is paid off has been gaining supporters over the past two weeks in the U.S. House of Representatives. Most of the new co-sponsors sit on the committee to which the bill was assigned.
The national office of the Better Business Bureau (BBB) has warned consumers about debt collection calls coming from a company calling itself “National Fraud and Investigation Agency.” The BBB notes that the company is not real and that the calls are a debt collection scam.
A report released late last week by consumer advocacy group the New Economy Project calls for reforms in New York that would reduce the use of the court system by debt buyers and collectors. The report also urges the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to more aggressively regulate the ARM industry.
A collection letter violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) because it stated that the debtor could only dispute the debt in writing, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit ruled recently.
If a theme emerged at Thursday’s joint FTC/CFPB roundtable on data used in the debt collection process, it was the need for a uniform set of standards in the flow of account data from creditors to collection agencies and debt buyers.
The all-day session, which featured a series of presentations and roundtable panels, brought together representatives from the ARM industry, consumer advocacy groups, original creditors, regulatory groups, and the judicial system
In the 1976 movie The Marathon Man, Sir Laurence Olivier is torturing Dustin Hoffman in the attempt to discover if it is safe for Olivier to retrieve his cache of ill-gotten diamonds. Olivier believes Hoffman knows the location of the diamonds and whether the site is being watched. So as he drills into his teeth, Olivier continually asks Hoffman, “Is it safe?” At the time, Hoffman does not know.
In context, two, recent federal district court decisions show the evolving and yet contradictory landscape of TCPA compliance on the issue of “express consent” under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, 47 U.S.C. § 227. As such, with regard to the safe harbor, “express consent,” defense, third party debt collectors are left to wonder, “is it safe?”
U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) Tuesday sent a formal letter to CFPB Director Richard Cordray urging the federal watchdog to issue rules and regulations to tighten oversight of the debt collection industry. Brown also noted that the matter will need a legislative fix in the form of FDCPA reform.