Short part of the story.. bought child's instrument on a rent-to-own basis (thinking he might decide not to stay with it). Fiance's ex-husband offered to pay and didn't. No notice of a problem until disturbing phone calls yesterday and today.
A Jonathon Lomax called my fiance's place of work (violation of Fair Debt Collection Act) and represented himself as an attorney (which he's not). The person who answered the phone mentioned she was unavailable, that collection agencies could not contact a person's place of employment, and needed a name so she could take a message. He responded with "Are you deaf" and "Are you hard of hearing?"
He then called home where I answered the phone. He again represented himself as an attorney, and while in conversation I hit this site to find out what this company was about (glad I did). He told me it was obvious from her credit report that she didn't like to take care of debts, which is not only untrue, but illegal considering I'm not related to my fiance yet (I NEVER said I was her husband, as in the state of Texas, that would fall under common law marriage).
He also said the music store owner was furious and wanted nothing to do with us (also untrue, as I play in a band with him on various weekends). He said she would be arrested today at 11AM if we didn't pay the account in full... also untrue as all that can be issued is a judgement for the unpaid balance and any fees associated with the account. He was yelling, demeaning, and obviously making an attempt to to use scare tactics. All the while, I kept telling him we were unaware that the account was unpaid, explained the situation, and we would be glad to pay the ammount if he would simply tell me how much. He demanded a credit card number, which I refused to give, citing their previous reputation, and would be glad to prepare a cashier's check if he would simply give me the amount and a billing address. I asked him if he was actually an attorney, and he immediate changed the subject. He demanded a cell phone number for my fiance, and I told him that would not be possible, and he should simply give me an ammount and address. I was hung up on.
Today, I recieved a call from Don Roberts of the same company. He had a much more reasonable tone, and the conversation started out calmly. I explained the situation again, and asked for an ammount and an address, and that a cashier's check would be on it's way immediately. His tone changed, he refenced the conversation with Mr. Lomax, and that we were in some kind of big trouble. I mentioned that Mr. Lomax not only violated the Fair Debt Collection Act by calling her place of employment, but that he took such a nasty tone that we would not deal with him anymore. Mr. Roberts immediately took the same tone, and said to some unknown (nonexistant?) employee standing nearby "Can we extradite this arrest warrant? This guy is being uncooperative."
Once again, I told him we would be happy to pay if they simply gave us an ammount and an address, and he wouldn't do it. So I told him I would simply call K & L and deal with them. He laughed, and tried to explain contracts to me (which I handle for a living) and what was agreed upon in the contract. I replied with the fact that companies are in business to make money, not spend time in court, and I was sure they would have no problem dealing with me directly.
Rather than call them, I actually called my attorney, who reassured me they could not get an arrest warrant issued, that they violated the Fair Debt Collection Act, that they illegally misprepresented themselves, and I should not deal with them until they send me something in writing on letterhead. And that is where we stand currently.
I will be contacting the Federal Trade Commission, and will be sure to post this experience on my recently rebuilt website with a link to this post.
Do not have any dealings with this company if you can avoid it. If you do, remind them of the Fair Debt Collection Act and the Federal Trade Commission.
p.s. K & S is the name of the company that held the account, and sent it to collections. When I called them, they said they'd had complaints before about A&L/AA and were already considering an abrupt termination of business with them.
U.S.A. CLICK here to see why Rip-off Report, as a matter of policy, deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this Report.