• Report: #508605
Complaint Review:

Cory G. Hicks & Associates

  • Submitted: Tue, October 13, 2009
  • Updated: Thu, February 23, 2012

  • Reported By: Leukemia Mom — Austin Texas USA
Cory G. Hicks & Associates
2200 North Wilmot, Suite 202 Tuscon, Arizona United States of America

Cory G. Hicks & Associates This collection agency is unethical and has broken the law. Tuscon, Arizona

*Consumer Comment: The IRS thing

*REBUTTAL Owner of company: Completely Untrue

*Consumer Comment: I'll try to answer

*Consumer Comment: Question Tim?

*Consumer Comment: Info for you

*Consumer Comment: Some advice

*General Comment: Do not give them your bank imfo

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I began to recieve phone calls summer 2009 from an individual who identified himself as "Zach Smith" from Cory G. Hicks and associates, identifying himself as a representative of a law firm.

Due to the extreme medical bills and hardships encountered during my daughter's fight against a rare form of leukemia, for which she also required a bone marrow transplant, my golf business had fallen behind with several vendors, all of which I am attempting to repay as I get back on my feet. I recognized the debt and began to explain that I was being forced to sell my home and when the proceeds came in, this debt would be satisfied.  The closing date was set for mid-August.  That wasn't good enough.  After letting me share with him the intimate details of my daughter's struggles for life, he then became belligerent and threatening over this $700 debt--certainly not the worst I have hanging over my head--but nonetheless it was important to me to solve it.

Mr. Smith would then interrupt me every time I re-iterated that there was NO way I could pay anything until the house sold.  I am still hanging on and trying to ensure that my daughter's health insurance not be cancelled.  I said, for heaven's sake, we were only talking about a few more weeks here.  He wanted a payment TODAY or legal proceedings would begin. I signed off realizing that this must be on of those unethical collection agencies.

The next communication left on my answering machine represented themselves as a law firm and threatened legal action.  He actually requested my bank account number and stated that if I did not provide it to him voluntarily, a private investigator would be hired, which, of course, would prove embarassing to me as he/she questioned business associates and neighbors.  I was now positive this was a very bad company and refused all communication.

When my daughter was ill, and I was not at my place of business, Mr. Smith then began to call the shop and attempted to intimidate my employees.  He threatened my store manager with reporting him to credit agencies unless this bill were paid that day, giving the reason that as manager he bears partial responsibility for the debt.
He also threatened and harassed my accounting clerk, who is six months pregnant and eventually got off the phone hyperventilating.  Unbelievable. 

He has since began calling my home again multiple times a day, disturbing a very sick child who is in a lot of pain.  Talking to him was impossible and ended in a shouting match.  I don't answer anymore.  I am also going to notify the original vendor that is owed the money that it will be paid directly to them when the funds become available, as I expect them to be shortly.  They are a vendor that I always enjoyed doing business with and would never leave them hanging if it weren't for the extreme nature of my difficulties.  I don't know if they have any control who acquires their bad debt accounts, but they cannot allow themselves to be associated with Cory G. Hicks, even tangentially.

The good news is that the latest tests confirm my daughter to be cancer free and in complete remission.  She has a good chance for a total cure. That sure puts things in perspective--but imagine how threatening and obnoxious this person was in order to inspire me to use what precious little time I have each day to actually file my first online complaint.

Class Action Suit?  Bring it on.  These folks are devoid of ethics, scruples and probably souls.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 10/13/2009 12:49 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/cory-g-hicks-associates/tuscon-arizona-85712/cory-g-hicks-associates-this-collection-agency-is-unethical-and-has-broken-the-law-tu-508605. 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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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment

The IRS thing

AUTHOR: Steve - (USA)

If you sell the debt, then yes you deduct the loss and that's that.

If you just "write off" the debt, then you can deduct the loss, but then if they end up paying you repay the taxes. The IRS has guidelines about how long before you can assume a debt won't be paid for tax purposes, but I am not sure of the details.

It is a lot like rebates; when a company offers a rebate on the product, they know that only a certain percentage of buyers will use the rebate, so the company uses an estimate for tax purposes, and then makes up the difference when the actual numbers come in.

And at first I thought the OP was a bit over the top, but after reading the post by the collector I'm not so sure; the collector seems like a bit of a scumbag. Check out this genius reasoning: 

"Obviously if you had employees running your business you had income and you had money to make payroll and justify the continuance of the company?"

1 - Just because you do not have zero income does not mean you can pay all your debts.

2 - Making payroll is a debt like anything else, including the $700 you are after. However, while the $700 can cost him some interest or a credit report hit, not paying his workers would cause the business to cease. Therefore he would be amazingly stupid to pay you instead of his employees.

3 - As far as him "justifying the continuance of the company" goes, you think he should shut it down? How daft are you? I mean, if he had a job but had to pay for transportation to get there, would you suggest he quit his job so that his transportation money could go towards you?

Also I find it funny that both the debtor AND the creditor make appeals to morality here. This is a business issue, nothing more. 
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#2 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Completely Untrue

AUTHOR: Cory hicks - (U.S.A.)

First of all I want to say congratulations on your daughters recovery.  That is good news and you are blessed.

That being said, why do you post this anonymously?  If you stand in the right as you claim then why do you not list your name, phone number and address so you can be contacted and made aware of your obligation more thoroughly.  Mr. Smith completely and thoroughly explained why you owed for the product you took and you admit that you owed it.  However, because you want it to be free you simply became argumentative and belligerent.  Is that not more the truth?  

Mr. Smith has worked for me for many years and if nothing else he is very compassionate when people are truthful and truly show a desire to resolve matters.  Looking at your post any reasonable person can see that your tactic was to use your poor daughters condition as some kind of excuse not to be responsible for yourself.  Obviously if you had employees running your business you had income and you had money to make payroll and justify the continuance of the company?  You should have made a better effort to resolve the money you owed instead of using your sick daughter as a pawn in your game of irresponsibility.  The worlds victims need to go live on an island and cry to each other while the rest of us responsible people do what is right despite how hard life is.  We all have it rough and to use that as an excuse not to meet your responsibilities is disgraceful.
Cory Hicks
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#3 Consumer Comment

I'll try to answer

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


I would go with the advice of your business attorney. My statement was more geared toward the scenario where the original creditor sells the debt at a loss or, in other words, sells the right to collect on the debt to a third party for a portion of the original debt.

At that point, to collect on the debt would be to treat it as an asset that you still own. My understanding is that this would be a violation of IRS rules in that you have declared a loss but are still taking actions indicating ownership of the debt.

Your scenario is different in that you have suffered a loss but, as you've retained the right to collect, you still have a potential asset. So it's kosher for you, since you haven't transferred the debt, to treat it as a loss one year and a gain in another.

I may be wording this completely wrong, and I am no tax guru. But I would love to hear some other input on this, especially if I'm way off the mark (which happens from time to time).

Best regards!

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#4 Consumer Comment

Question Tim?

AUTHOR: Robert - (USA)

"But here's the thing. By the time your debt has been handed over to a collection agency, the original creditor has likely charged it off as a business loss, ergo they cannot collect on it per IRS rules."

Can you cite the exact IRS rule or section of U.S. code that stipulates this?  In the past I have had 3 debts owed to me that I "wrote off" (charged off) and LATER the debtors paid me the monies after I sent them a few letters.  Once the monies were received, I then claimed the monies on my business taxes for the year inwhich they were received.  I did this per the instructions of my business attorney.

It is my understanding that a charged off debt is STILL VALID and collectible.  I know of only 3 ways that a charged off debt is absolved;  The creditor forgives it, the debtor pays it, or a court orders it absolved.  If you know of a specific rule or statute that states otherwise I'd surely like to know about it.

Thanks in advance Tim.

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#5 Consumer Comment

Info for you

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

If you live in the State of Texas the law is that a debt collector MUST file a Surety Bond with the Secretary of State - I searched the website and this "firm" does not have a bond filed therefore they cannot try to collect a debt period

Section 392.101 of the Texas Finance Code prohibits a third-party debt collector or credit bureau from engaging in debt collection in Texas unless the third-party debt collector or credit bureau has obtained a surety bond and filed a copy of the bond with the Office of the Secretary of State.

Contact the Secretary of State and file a report - this agency can be fined for every call made - keep a record of all calls made, record them then sue em

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#6 Consumer Comment

Some advice

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

I love Steph's vitriol against debt collectors, as they are, generally, the scum of the earth.

However, I find myself disagreeing with her advice most of the time. Don't tell deeebt collectors to go f*ck themselves, that will only make them more aggressive. However:

1) DO refrain from giving out personal information.

2) DO refrain from entering into payment agreements. This creates a new contract, with a new statute of limitations.

But here's the thing. By the time your debt has been handed over to a collection agency, the original creditor has likely charged it off as a business loss, ergo they cannot collect on it per IRS rules.

My standard advice is one of the following (in order of preference):

1) Declare bankruptcy.

2) If you can make a ONE TIME payment of 60% of the original debt, offer this to the collector in exchange for a "Satisfaction and Release" of the underlying debt.

3) Send a cease and desist letter.

Option 3 will not work if this is contracted as a commercial debt (FYI to my RoR loyalists: the FDCPA does not apply to commercial debts). But it will force the matter into litigation, which you may or may not want.

I know this isn't much help, but it's all I can give. I hope it helps.

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#7 General Comment

Do not give them your bank imfo

AUTHOR: Steph - (USA)

I would tell this person to stick it were the sun don't shine . I would not even give this caller your bank imformation these agencys cannot be trusted . If I were you I would call the phone company to see about putting a block on thier # so they can no longer contact you. If it shows unknown I would request to the phone company that you do not take calls from blocked calls. If he calls your place of employment I would have my manager get on the phone and tell him if he does not stop calling here he will face a harassment suit. It is also against the law for a collection agency to call you at work
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