Complaint Review

Anderson Crenshaw And Associates

Report: #334449

Submitted:
Fri, May 23, 2008
Updated:
Sun, February 14, 2010
Reported By:

Kingwood Texas
Name:
Anderson Crenshaw And Associates
Address:
12801 North Central Expressway Dallas,, Texas U.S.A. Phone:
866-400-3550
Category:
Collection Agencies

Anderson Crenshaw And Associates Justin Goldstein Harrassment at Work. Threatening and Rude. Dallas, Texas

*General Comment: More from Root v. Anderson Crenshaw

*Consumer Comment: Response to Bethany

* : Response to Max

*Consumer Comment: Questions for Bethany

*UPDATE Employee: Rebuttal

*Consumer Comment: Anderson Crenshaw -- Collectors Paid by How Much Debt They Collect

*Consumer Comment: More about Justin Goldstein

*Consumer Comment: The Ultimate Irony: Justin D. Goldstein

*Consumer Comment: Experience with Justin Goldstein

*Consumer Comment: Experience with Justin Goldstein

*Consumer Comment: Experience with Justin Goldstein

*Consumer Comment: Experience with Justin Goldstein

*Consumer Comment: This is one of the worst third party collection agencies

*Consumer Comment: Scenarios.

*REBUTTAL Individual responds: LETS GET TO THE POINT...


Justin Goldstein of Anderson Crenshaw and Associates is harrassing me at work even after I told him that I have been advised by my attorney not to speak to him and told him not to contact me at my place of business. He calls and sends faxes my employer on a daily basis. I have told him this is a personal matter not job related so do not call my job.

He raises his voice on the phone. Interrupts me when I am trying to speak. He is rude and condesending. Apparently Anderson Crensaw and Associates only employs people who are rude and do not know how to deal with people other than threaten them.

Lara
Kingwood, Texas
U.S.A.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 05/23/2008 09:08 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Anderson-Crenshaw-And-Associates/Dallas-Texas-75243/Anderson-Crenshaw-And-Associates-Justin-Goldstein-Harrassment-at-Work-Threatening-and-Ru-334449. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 14Consumer 1Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 General Comment

More from Root v. Anderson Crenshaw

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)


Here's an excerpt from one of the plaintiff's briefs concerning the conduct of Justin Goldstein of Anderson Crenshaw against a Florida couple.  This is based on the Roots' sworn declarations, which were also filed with the court.

Although the Roots asked Goldstein to stop calling them, he refused and began to call
with increasing frequency. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) He called them at work. (Decl. of
Tom Root, 6-11) He called them at home. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) He called them
on their cell phones. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) He called them after they asked him to
stop. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) He called them after they told him he was tying up
their only work phone line, and costing them business. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) He
called them and used abusive, profane language. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) He called
them and shouted demeaning statements at them. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) He called them and said things that he knew were illegal to say in consumer collections. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) He called them even though he knew the underlying debt was not valid. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) He called them in deliberate violation of state and federal consumer debt collection law. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11) These calls all took place between March, 2008, and June of 2008, when this lawsuit began. (Decl. of Tom Root, 6-11).


Were these charges false or fabricated by the Roots, as Justin would probably claim, you would think that Justin would direct his attorneys to litigate the case through trial, where he could defend his honor on the stand.  But no, he settled.
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#2 Consumer Comment

Response to Bethany

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)


I don't understand why "Bethany" won't answer the questions I posed in a public forum, as they are not specific to my case but rather deal generally with the company's business practices and integrity.  As for the supposed complaint resolution procedure, I was never informed of it by Mr. Goldstein when he yelled and hung up on me and when I told him I felt he was acting inappropriately.  There is not much use in having a complaint procedure if employees refuse to tell customers about it when there is a complaint.  (And, lest we forget, Anderson Crenshaw refused to send anything in writing until it is paid, so that could not serve as a means of notice.)  That, plus Anderson Crenshaw's apparent use of false identities (again, does Paul Crenshaw exist?) make me question whether there is a complaint department or even a "Bethany."  This seems like nothing more than the latest in a string of misrepresentations by this company.

By the way, as of November 9, 2009, Justin Goldstein was still listed on the Dallas Municipal Court's outstanding warrant list. 
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#3

Response to Max

AUTHOR: Beth - (U.S.A.)

Max, as stated in my previous response, our Dispute Department is here to field the types of concerns you address in questions. I look forward to your phone call. 214-368-2980.

Bethany

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#4 Consumer Comment

Questions for Bethany

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)

Bethany: Here are my questions. Please answer them here.

1. Why is Anderson Crenshaw sued so frequently, both by private individuals and governmental agencies? Does this indicate a pattern of illegal behavior?

2. Is it appropriate for employees of a bill collection company -- particularly one that posts sanctimonious messages on this website about paying your bills on time -- to have outstanding warrants for non-payment of court fines?

3. Does Paul Crenshaw exist? Why is the company named "Anderson Crenshaw" if neither owner has that name? If there is no Paul Crenshaw, why is your company sending out letters that purport to be signed by him?

4. Your company, namely a Ms. Fairfax, called me without identifying herself as a debt collector. I have the voice mail message saved. This is a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, which specifies damages of $1000 for such an action. Do you intend to pay it? Would it be appropriate for me to call your employees at their home numbers to remedy this situation?

5. Why did Mr. Goldstein tell me that your "client" would receive any payments and that employees are not paid by how much they collect, when the Dallas Morning News reported exactly the opposite?

6. Do you feel that disseminating false statements of law by non-lawyers over the telephone is consistent with federal law?
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#5 UPDATE Employee

Rebuttal

AUTHOR: Beth - (U.S.A.)

My name is Bethany, i'm with the Dispute Deparment of Anderson, Crenshaw and Associates. I am sorry to hear you had a negative experience with our company and our employees. The dispute department exists for many reasons, one of which is to address the sort of problems you encountered. I encourage you to contact us directly, at 214-368-2980, extensions 3305 (Ron), 3309(Jared) or 3310 (Bethany).
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#6 Consumer Comment

Anderson Crenshaw -- Collectors Paid by How Much Debt They Collect

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)

Justin Goldstein claimed he would not benefit financially whether I paid my debt. His company said something very different to the Dallas Morning News in October 2005. Read on. And note that while collection letters come from a "Paul Crenshaw," the company is actually run by two guys named Backal and Harrison, who boast about not being members of the Better Business Bureau.

BODY:
Thomas Backal calls his line of work the "ugly toe" on the big foot of commerce -- "something that nobody wants to talk about."

Backal, 32, is chief executive of Anderson, Crenshaw & Associates, which operates Debt Liquidation Group, a debt-collection company.

His 3-year-old firm, which he says could reach $3 million in revenue this year, has found a niche in the fast-growing but still highly decentralized industry. There are about 6,500 "accounts receivable management" firms nationwide.

Despite the industry's shaky public image, Backal and his competitors make no apologies for how they earn a living.

Indeed, they see themselves as serving an important role in the economy and say if everyone would live up to their obligations, there wouldn't be any need for debt collectors, or any complaints about them.

"We keep some companies in business," said Backal, who started his company in 2002 out of his home. "Without the creditor, the economy folds. We have to protect the creditor."

But consumer advocates and Americans who have alleged abusive behavior by debt collectors don't buy the savior role. They say the "ugly toe" of debt collection tramples their rights and bullies some people into paying money they don't owe.

Indeed, Anderson Crenshaw is the subject of so many unresolved complaints from consumers that the Better Business Bureau of Metropolitan Dallas Inc. has given it an "unsatisfactory" record.

Of the 221 debt-collection firms that the bureau has information on, 10 percent, or 24, have an unsatisfactory record, said Jeannette Kopko, bureau senior vice president.

Anderson Crenshaw is no longer a member of the BBB and so has stopped responding to complaints from it, Backal said.

"We're in disagreement with them over some of their procedures, and that's all I can say to that," he said.

As Americans' debt has grown, so has the debt-collection industry. "Wherever credit is extended, ultimately there's going to be a need for some type of a collection effort," said Mark Davitt, president of ACA International, the Association of Credit and Collection Professionals.

The industry generated $15 billion in revenue in 2004, up from $4.5 billion in 1994, according to Kaulkin Ginsberg Co. in Bethesda, Md., which advises debt-collection firms on mergers and acquisitions.

And as the industry has grown, complaints against it have, too.

In 2004, the number of consumer complaints received by the Federal Trade Commission about third-party debt collectors totaled 58,687, representing 17 percent of the complaints the FTC received about all industries. The figure is a 70 percent increase from 2003.

FTC officials cautioned against reading too much into the increase "in part because it's easier than ever to complain to us."

"If you look at the number as a percentage of overall contacts (that debt collectors have with consumers), it's a pretty small percentage," said Joel Winston, associate director of the FTC's Division of Financial Practices.

Still, he isn't dismissing the significance of the increase.

"We are certainly taking a very careful look at why this may be occurring and whether additional enforcement is appropriate," Winston said.

It's in the industry's best interests to rid itself of any bad apples, said Davitt, whose group encourages best practices and compliance with the law.

Other factors contributing to the growth of the industry are the willingness of businesses to farm out collection efforts and the growth of firms that buy accounts receivable from creditors for pennies on the dollar, then try to collect the debt themselves.

That's what PRM Financial Services does.

"It has been a financial sweetheart for a while," said Carol Freeland, executive vice president and partner at PRM. "You would only do this if you've become proficient and develop a good business plan around how to run a good recovery agency, where you can make something out of a negative. That does not mean that you're going to make huge amounts of money."

PRM Financial Services says ideally, it looks for credit card balances between $400 and $7,500 with a portfolio of 5,000-plus accounts each time it makes a purchase.

But it does have accounts that are less than $400 and more than $7,500. The 20-year-old company has a satisfactory rating with the Better Business Bureau.

Small companies that find a niche are typical of the industry.

"The vast majority of those in this industry are very small companies under $8 million in annual revenue, just serving one doctor's office or just one creditor," said Paul Legrady, director of the research group at Kaulkin Ginsberg.

Or they focus on a particular kind of creditor.

"They may be looking at health care, utilities and communication services," said Dwain James, executive director of the American Collectors Association of Texas. "That way, they can train their people to focus on the laws and the procedures that govern that type of industry."

Experts say such firms might take a 20 to 30 percent commission out of the debts they return to creditors.

Anderson Crenshaw specializes in collecting debt for home security, extermination, landscape, satellite services and cellular telephone companies.

The firm chalked up $1.68 million in revenue last year, a steady increase from $868,000 in 2003 and about $6,000 when it started.

Like many firms, Anderson Crenshaw pays its employees based in part on how much debt they collect. Companies say they go to great lengths to ensure their collectors don't violate laws governing the industry.

For example, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act prohibits a collector from contacting a consumer before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m., unless the consumer agrees.

PRM also uses a "phonetically based listening system that evaluates every conversation and listens for certain things that must be said" by a collector, such as telling a debtor that the collector is calling regarding an unpaid bill, she said.

"Those are things that we use that help to keep us on the straight and narrow," Freeland said.

At Anderson Crenshaw and at PRM, collectors typically operate from a script, and they document phone calls and record them.

In their zeal, many debt collectors step outside the law, said Steve Tripoli, consumer fraud investigator at the National Consumer Law Center in Boston.

"This is a very brazen industry," he said.

But Michael Harrison, Backal's partner, said Anderson Crenshaw's debt collectors are tough but fair. They work from the assumption that the debts companies ask them to collect are legitimate.

Debtors serve up all kinds of reasons why they haven't paid up, Harrison said.

"We get hardened by the excuses," he said. "We've heard it all."

Debt collectors are actually consumer advocates, Backal said, because if businesses can't collect on unpaid bills, they have to raise prices on honest consumers to compensate for the losses.

"We're doing a necessary job," Backal said. "If people paid their bills, we wouldn't have a job."

------

Know your rights.

What you can do:



Request verification of the debt in writing. The collector must provide documentation.



If you ask the collector to stop communicating with you, he can then only notify you of the specific action planned.



Ask the collector to contact your attorney instead of you.

To file a complaint against a collector:



Federal Trade Commission, ftc.gov; 1-877-382-4357.

What a collector can't do:



Threaten violence or a criminal act against you.



Use obscene language.



Repeatedly call with the intent of harassing you.



Contact third parties about your debt (except to find out where you live, what your phone number is and where you work).



Tell others besides your attorney that you owe money.



Call you before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. without your consent.

SOURCE: Dallas Morning News research

LOAD-DATE: October 10, 2005
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#7 Consumer Comment

More about Justin Goldstein

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)

He's being sued in Florida, along with Anderson Crenshaw, which is facing or has faced multiple lawsuits in multiple states, including a class action case in New Mexico. The case is Root v. Anderson Crenshaw & Associates and Justin Goldstein, No. 8:08-CV-01121 (M.D. Fla.). The Roots are a couple who, like me, had the misfortune of purchasing an alarm system and wound up speaking with Justin Goldstein. According to Paragraph 12 of the complaint:

"During his phone calls to the Roots, Goldstein repeatedly used profanity and other abusive language intended to cause the Roots emotional
distress."

The case is in mediation now, and I'm sure Justin will use that famous charm of his to get a good settlement. Maybe he'll yell at the judge, "Stop playing games with me!" After all, it works at Anderson Crenshaw.
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#8 Consumer Comment

The Ultimate Irony: Justin D. Goldstein

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)

This is the ultimate irony: A Justin D. Goldstein, of Dallas, TX, where Anderson Crenshaw and Associates is located, is on the Dallas Municipal Court's "Delinquent List." According to this list, dated May 25, 2009, which is posted at http://www.dallascityhall.com/courts/current_warrants_GL.pdf, Mr. Goldstein owes $632.55 from two judgments.

Could it be the same Justin Goldstein of Anderson Crenshaw, who calls members of the public, lecturing them on paying their bills, claiming to be a "legal representative" and an expert on contract law? I hope the Dallas Municipal Court is more forgiving of Mr. Goldstein than he is to his victims.

My advice: If you receive a collection call from Justin Goldstein, and he begins lecturing you on paying your debts, ask him if he is the same Justin David Goldstein who may have an outstanding warrant with the Dallas Municipal Court, and direct him to the above web site.
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#9 Consumer Comment

Experience with Justin Goldstein

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)

I received a collection call from Anderson Crenshaw and was eventually transferred to Mr. Goldstein. During our conversation, he became angered and defensive when I asked him questions about the alleged debt that he demanded I pay. When I asked him for the physical address of Anderson Crenshaw, he yelled, "Don't play games with me!" and hung up. He only later gave me his address after I obtained it from an Assistant Attorney General in Texas who is working on a lawsuit against Mr. Goldstein's company.

I am pursuing my dispute with Mr. Goldstein, Anderson Crenshaw and their client with the approriate authorities.
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#10 Consumer Comment

Experience with Justin Goldstein

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)

I received a collection call from Anderson Crenshaw and was eventually transferred to Mr. Goldstein. During our conversation, he became angered and defensive when I asked him questions about the alleged debt that he demanded I pay. When I asked him for the physical address of Anderson Crenshaw, he yelled, "Don't play games with me!" and hung up. He only later gave me his address after I obtained it from an Assistant Attorney General in Texas who is working on a lawsuit against Mr. Goldstein's company.

I am pursuing my dispute with Mr. Goldstein, Anderson Crenshaw and their client with the approriate authorities.
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#11 Consumer Comment

Experience with Justin Goldstein

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)

I received a collection call from Anderson Crenshaw and was eventually transferred to Mr. Goldstein. During our conversation, he became angered and defensive when I asked him questions about the alleged debt that he demanded I pay. When I asked him for the physical address of Anderson Crenshaw, he yelled, "Don't play games with me!" and hung up. He only later gave me his address after I obtained it from an Assistant Attorney General in Texas who is working on a lawsuit against Mr. Goldstein's company.

I am pursuing my dispute with Mr. Goldstein, Anderson Crenshaw and their client with the approriate authorities.
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#12 Consumer Comment

Experience with Justin Goldstein

AUTHOR: Max - (U.S.A.)

I received a collection call from Anderson Crenshaw and was eventually transferred to Mr. Goldstein. During our conversation, he became angered and defensive when I asked him questions about the alleged debt that he demanded I pay. When I asked him for the physical address of Anderson Crenshaw, he yelled, "Don't play games with me!" and hung up. He only later gave me his address after I obtained it from an Assistant Attorney General in Texas who is working on a lawsuit against Mr. Goldstein's company.

I am pursuing my dispute with Mr. Goldstein, Anderson Crenshaw and their client with the approriate authorities.
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#13 Consumer Comment

This is one of the worst third party collection agencies

AUTHOR: Stacey - (U.S.A.)

And to the "employee" - get real
Your company buys out of date debts for pennies on the dollar
To the OP - go to www.budhibbs.com and read about these lowlifes
Sued one of these "collection agencies" and won
Don't get mad, get smart and get even!
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#14 Consumer Comment

Scenarios.

AUTHOR: Robert - (U.S.A.)

"" Good Luck everyone, and next time, think of the scenario that put you in the mess you're in before you complain about the collector/collection agency.""

Well Mr. Conviviality, here's the scenarios that had debt collectors harassing me:

1. Debt for outstanding electric bill. Was actually the debt of someone in Syracuse, NY with the same name (but different middle initial.) I finally called the NYS Police to file a criminal complaint. A sergeant with the NYS Police resolved the matter with NYSEG and the debt collecting agency (he accomplished this in less than 2 hours using the telephone.)

2. Debt for back surgery at a local hospital. I sent a letter to the hospital demanding an explanation. The hospital finally got the collection agency to stop harassing me. There was an "error" with the patient ID number.

3. Debt for pager service for a KM Enterprises in Rhode Island (I have never been to Rhode Island.) I had to send a letter to Sherman Aquisitions to get Vital Recovery Systems to stop callling me. The response from Sherman indicated that 2 digits of the SSN were transposed, and PRESTO, the debt became mine.

In each of these scenarios, I called the debt collection agency and explained how the debt was not mine. The only thing my calls to the debt collection agencies accomplished was that their calls to ME increased in frequency, sometimes 2 or 3 times per day with such statements as "pay it or get a lawyer" (Vital Recovery Systems.)

In scenario #3 I had to speak to a supervisor at Vital Recovery Services and tell him that I was going to file CRIMINAL complaints with the Attorney General in NY and Georgia if they continued to REFUSE to tell me who OWNED the debt. Only then did he give me the contact information for Sherman Acquisitions. One phone call and follow up letter to Sherman (by me) resolved the matter.

Think about THESE scenarios before you make such statements again-especially on the internet. Mistakes happen; sometimes with the creditor's records, sometimes by debt collection agency employees.
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#15 REBUTTAL Individual responds

LETS GET TO THE POINT...

AUTHOR: Laxizm - (U.S.A.)

Alrighty, lets actually get the the root of this mess. Miss "Lara" as she wants to be called is quite demonstrative in her claims against my company. One being the absurd claim about me calling/faxing her work numerous times. Lets get serious, if I had done that I would be in violation of the most pure set of laws around... the FDCPA. Please "Lara" if you would like to respond as to why you were called in the first place, and what the goings on of your account in my office are, I would love to know... as I'm sure all the other 'consumers' who have been 'hurt' by debt collectors. As you are all well aware, if everyone paid their bills on time, we wouldnt need to constantly call to remind them. Good Luck everyone, and next time, think of the scenario that put you in the mess you're in before you complain about the collector/collection agency.
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