AFNI is refusing to validate to me, yet keeps reporting to the CRA's
Here is a timeline of events as they occurred:
1/31-I received a letter from AFNI stating that I owed them for an Alltel account in the amount of $451. Notice that the original account number at this time was XXXXXX according to AFNI.
1/31-I responded to them via regular mail, stating (paraphrased) that I did not know what they were talking about as I had not had an Alltel account in several years, and I left that account in good standing to the best of my recollection.
I never heard anything back from them, and assumed the issue was resolved.
5/12-I checked my credit reports and found that AFNI had this account reported and showed it as a collection account. At this point, I disputed with Experian online.
6/09-I received a response from Experian stating that they had investigated the claim, and that it had been validated to them by AFNI.
It was at this time that I had seen the Budd Hibbs web page that said that AFNI had been reported to be collecting on out of statute debts. In addition, they have been reported to re-age debts.
6/13-I decided to send them a letter from that website. I faxed it to the number given on the Bud Hibbs website and kept a copy of the transmittal confirmation.
6/20-I ran a copy of my combined credit report showing the account on all three reporting agencies. I also filed another dispute online. At this time, although it showed as a collection account, there was no data in the payment history on this account.
7/11-I received a response from Equifax stating that they had investigated my claim, and that AFNI had validated this debt to them.
7/16-I received a letter from AFNI requesting that their investigation would be complete within 30 days of me sending them, among other things, a copy of my drivers license as well as a phone number where they could call me. This was even though in ALL my correspondence with them, I specifically stated that I will only correspond in writing and that any phone calls would be considered harassment. Notice the original account number had now changed to 630XXXXXXX. If that is supposed to be a phone number, the area code would be for Chicago. I have not been to Illinois since 1987, and there were no cell phones at that time.
7/17-I filed complaints with the FTC and the MD Office Of the Attorney General, Consumer Protection Division. I also sent formal letters to each of the three major reporting agencies stating that I had contacted AFNI, and that they had refused to respond to my requests to provide me with PROOF of this account and its validity as required by the law. I requested that they remove these items from my credit report once again, and that they provide me with any information on how they validated the debts in the first place. Attached to all of these letters was a copy of the letter I had faxed to AFNI on 6/13.
7/20-I received a letter from TransUnion that said they could not accept the documents that I had provided, but that they would contact AFNI to validate this debt again.
7/23-I called a lawyer in response to e-mail correspondence we had exchanged. He asked that I gather all this information and mail it to him.
I also received another letter from TransUnion that said they do not provide dispute verification response provided by creditors, and that I should contact the creditor.
7/24-I received a letter from the MD Office of the Attorney General to inform me that the consumer protection division does not handle this type of thing, but that they would forward my complaint to the Maryland Commission on Financial Regulation.
I also received an additional letter from TransUnion indicating they were putting a fraud alert on my credit report.
Equifax also sent a response placing a fraud alert on my account
7/25-AFNI sent another response saying that they would complete the investigation if I sent them various things that I am not willing to send.
7/26-I ran a combined credit report again. This time, the Equifax has been updated to report that I made payments from Dec 06 through May 07on time and went delinquent at that time. I know for a fact that I have not made ANY payments to AFNI or Alltel. This is fraudulent reporting.
I also filed a complaint with the Better Business Burea of Peoria, Illinois where AFNI is headquartered.
I have read on ripoffreports.com that there are 303 complaints very similar, if not identical, to mine. Also, on complantsboard.com there are about 200 similar, and even on the Bud Hibbs website they are listed among the agencies to avoid with a special page devoted just to them. It is time someone put a stop to these illegal practices. If a class action is warranted and feasible, then I would be interested in that as well.