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Author Topic: Unpaid Fines  (Read 2191 times)

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Offline meangene

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Unpaid Fines
« on: June 01, 2014, 10:57:37 PM »
Someone told me years ago that if you had an unpaid fine and went to prison, you did not have to pay the fine as they had no recourse to make you pay the old fine.  

Last year some legislation passed and I do not know what it is, that allowed unpaid fines be passed on to Collection Bureaus .  My son will be in prison for another 5 years and has spent most of the past 20 years in prison.  In February all the really old unpaid fines have been turned over to a collection agency and it is a constant all day long phone calls for payment.  
 
Is there any recourse?  After he gets out of prison he will be old and have no employment skills much less money to pay for his fines.  What can be done? does any one know

Offline lvanrs2

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Re: Unpaid Fines
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2014, 05:40:12 AM »
Collection agencies have to follow some guidelines.  You can report any abuse directly to the FTC  http://www.ftc.gov/

When they call again you simply tell them you no longer wish to be contacted at this number.  Your son does not live there and any further calls will be reported and all appropriate legal action will be taken against them.

When Can Debt Collectors Call

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is the Federal law that says what debt collectors can and can't do. For starters, they aren't to call you about a debt that you don't owe. When a debt collector first contacts you about a debt, you have the right to request them to verify the debt is yours. If the debt collector can't come back with proof that you owe the debt, they're not allowed to contact you anymore. Make Debt Collectors Prove You Owe

Even without sending a validation request, debt collectors have certain rules they must follow when it comes to contacting you over the phone. For example, they can't call you before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. your local time. They can't call you repeatedly, and they can't call you at anytime you've previously stated is inconvenient. For specific situations timing of debt collector calls check out When Can Debt Collectors Call.

Stop Debt Collection Calls

There's no law that says you have to communicate with a debt collector by phone. If you hang up on a debt collector there is nothing they can do about it. But, if the collector continues to call you repeatedly even after you have hung up on them, they are in violation of the FDCPA.

All you have to do to stop debt collectors from calling you is tell them that you prefer to communicate with them in writing. Written communication works in your favor because it gives you a record of everything that is said. If the debt collector violate the FDCPA, you have hard evidence that could lead to a lawsuit in your favor. Keep in mind that, by law, the debt collector does not have to honor this request.

The surest way to stop debt collectors from calling you is by sending what is known as a cease and desist letter. In the letter, state that the collector should cease and desist further communication with you. Note that the cease and desist letter only applies to debt collectors, not the original creditor.

Debt Collectors Contacting You About Someone Else's Debt

People who've recently changed their phone numbers are often plagued with calls from collectors trying to reach that number's previous owner. You might have this problem even if you've had the same number for years. Unfortunately, telling the debt collector that they have the wrong number may not be enough to stop the calls for good. Instead, you should send a cease and desist letter as if the debt were yours. Of course, you shouldn't admit to the debt, especially since you're not the debtor. If calls persist after the cease and desist letter, report the collector to your state Attorney General and the Federal Trade Commission.

Debt collectors might also contact you trying to locate another person, like a friend or relative. Somehow in their background check, your contact information has been liked to the debtor. The law does allow debt collectors to contact a third-party to get a phone number, address, and employment information, but the collector can only contact a specific third-party once and they can't reveal any information about the debt. A debt collector is violating the law if they continue to contact you for contact information even after you've told them what you know.

If you're attorney for, spouse of, or parent or guardian of a minor who owes a debt collection, the collectors are allowed to contact you. A cease and deist letter can stop collection calls in these cases, too.

What Happens After the Cease and Desist

Once the collection agency receives your cease and desist letter they can communicate with you once more, via mail, letting you know one of three things: that further efforts to collect the debt are terminated, that certain actions may be taken by the debt collector, or that the debt collector is definitely going to take certain actions.

When you send the cease and desist letter to the debt collector, send it via certified mail with return receipt requested. This will provide proof that the letter was sent and received. If the debt collector communicates with you beyond the single instance allowed by law, this evidence will allow you to seek punitive action against the debt collector.
There is no action better at creating insanity in a person than trying to control something you have no control over.

Only do whatever you are willing to pay the consequences for.

Offline meangene

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Re: Unpaid Fines
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2014, 07:34:58 AM »
Thank you very much for the information.

Is there anyway I can find out what the legislation is that allowed the County Clerks to transfer the debt to a Collection Agency.  There seem to not be a Statute of limitation .  One man I looked up has over $100,000 from 1988 reassigned to a collection agency.

Offline lvanrs2

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Re: Unpaid Fines
« Reply #3 on: June 03, 2014, 05:05:09 AM »
I couldn't find anything specific but read on a few blogs that even though the unpaid fines have been sent to collections the courts can still put out an arrest warrant.  They have suggested that a court appearance be done.  I guess you can put in a request to the judge to have the collection agency stop contacting you because the debt isn't yours.  Your son could go to the law library and writ himself into court to try and get these fines worked out somehow since he still has some time to go in jail.  If the courts put out a warrant for his arrest he may not be released when the time comes.
There is no action better at creating insanity in a person than trying to control something you have no control over.

Only do whatever you are willing to pay the consequences for.


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