I was contacted by a rep from IC Systems without first receiving a letter (as required by law). They explained that I owed $108.00 for a medical bill that I beleive was already paid. I was told to pay it again through them and then to try to get my money back from the doctor. I said no way and asked them to provide proof of what the bill was for as well as verify that it was paid. She refused and told me to mail her a letter, which I did.
A few weeks later, I received a letter from IC systems indicating that they were going to place this debt on my credit report. I called and spoke to a "J.P." as he was not man enough to give his real name. I advised him of my conversation with the other collector. He told me not to worry because he had a solution. What was it? YUP, PAY THEM and then go after my doctor's office. I once again asked him to provide proof that the bill was still owed and I would gladly pay it. He asked me to put it in writing.
After explaining to him that I already did that, the brain surgeron to be suggested that I send another one. I told him that I had no problem with that and asked for his fax number. Ahh but wait, I, as a lowly "debtor", am not allowed to have that number, that is for CLIENT'S only. So I broke down and spent the 37 cents to mail another letter. Well they responded alright.. THEY PLACED IT ON MY CREDIT REPORT ANYWAY.
People know your rights! The first thing I did was dispute it with the 3 main credit reporting companies. I now plan on sending another letter, regular and certified mail, that informs them that I know my rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, as well as the Fair Credit and Reporting act.
If this has happened to you, dont let them get away with it. Now I am sure that when I call I am going to be told that I can fix it by paying them. But that isn't the point. Oh wait, did I neglect to say that the bill was for $108.00? Not exactly the national debt. Anyway... don't let them bully you around! If this happens to you either call up and ask to speak to their corporate office, OR look through the phone book for a lawyer who specializes in bringing scummy collection agencies into line with the Federal Law.
Oh and one last thing to people out there. THIS IS WHY YOU GO TO COLLEGE, so you don't have to end up working for places like IC Systems!
Browns Mills, New Jersey