The Attorney General of Massachusetts has filed a lawsuit against and reached a preliminary agreement with a debt purchaser/collector that was accused of conducting business in the state without a proper license and other violations of debt collection regulations.

Massachusetts Assistant Attorney General Jonathan Engel issued a press release Monday detailing the suit against The Cadle Company, one of its operating units and the company’s owner, Daniel C. Cadle. The suit alleges that Cadle was engaging in debt collection operations in the state without proper license.

The AG’s office said Cadle agreed to cease direct collection operations in Massachusetts while the case progresses. It will hire collection agencies and attorneys licensed in the state to conduct its collections operations on debt it purchases in the interim.

But Dan Cadle told that he feels the case is without merit, and that the AG’s office is mischaracterizing the agreement.

“We aren’t doing anything wrong,” he said. “We are not violating any rules. We ‘agreed’ to do what were already doing: hiring licensed agencies in Massachusetts to work our debt in that state.”

The AG’s office said that Cadle applied for a license in December 2003 but was denied. Another business unit of Cadle, The Cadle Company II, Inc., similarly applied for a license in August 2005 that was also denied in July 2007. The AG alleges that Cadle “engaged in unlicensed debt collections between the December 2003 license denial of TCC and TCC II’s August 2005 application for licensure.”

The AG’s release said that the agreement between it and Cadle does not resolve the lawsuit against the firm.