Report: #1059822

Complaint Review: Ruben & Rosenthal, Inc.

  • Submitted: Mon, June 17, 2013
  • Updated: Tue, June 18, 2013
  • Reported By: AlliS — Evans Georgia
  • Ruben & Rosenthal, Inc.
    235 Peachtree Street N.E.,Ste.400
    Atlanta, Georgia

Ruben & Rosenthal, Inc. Collection Company Violating Federal and State Fair Debt Collections Practices again. Atlanta Georgia

*Consumer Comment: Similar Situation. Class-Action Lawsuit?

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Ruben & Rosenthal, Inc. which I have learned also does business under another business name which is Professional Services. They are by far the most abusive company that I have ever heard from regarding an outstanding debt that I owe and is in collections.

I will not deny that I owe my fair share of medical debts. I applied for Social Security Disability a few years back because I have been diagnosed with a couple of very severe back problems that has made it impossible for me to work in the field that I am qualified anymore and cannot do any type of labor that has any type of physical demands at all.

I have been contacted by most of my debtors so far already, and they have all been professional. They ask to speak with me and then explain who they are and why they are calling. I immediately apologize and explain to them my current situation and that I am fully aware that I do in fact owe this debt. I further state that I am still awaiting a decision from Social Security Disability and am represented by an attorney for this. However, it is a very lengthy and tedious process and we are just awaiting word from regarding our appeal. The typical response is usually the same across the board and professional. The response is usually often the same. They simply state that they will notate my account and just check back with me in a few months to see if I have heard anything new and thank me for my time. Very nice.

But then in April, I began receiving robo calls from someone by the name of Mr. Griffin and these calls occurred 3 to 4 times daily. Also, when the phone calls would be made, the number was always a blocked number and I do not answer blocked numbers. The message left from the robo call has a tone that you can feel immediately will be an unpleasant communication. The message would always say, "Alisha, it would be in your best interest to contact me before the end of the day today. My name is Mr. Griffin and I may be reached at 800... opt. 601945." The caller never stated the reason for his call nor identified the company name either.

I received a call from my father 2 weeks ago and he was quite upset for me. He explained to me that this man by the name of Mr. Griffin had just contacted him on the phone and did not even ask if he even knew me. He just stated who he was and that he was with the legal department of a company trying to collect in the amount of $815.42 on behalf of Gold Cross EMS from AlliS. My father told him that he did not know anyone by that name. I had already instructed my parents quite some time ago that if anyone ever called their home asking for me for anything to tell them that do not know anyone by that name. My parents are not well and cannot endure any stress and do not people pestering them.

My father was extremely upset that this man just took it upon himself to air my extremely personal business in such a manner and only wanted to make me aware immediately. I was absolutely floored that he had told him all of this information. I decided that I would wait a few days and then I would contact them and try to explain to them, as I have everyone else, about my current situation concerning my awaiting the decision on my Social Security Disability claim.

I endured the constant calls for the next few days with same extremely sternly stated messages. So, when I did call the number I was floored as I had no idea how absolutely cruel and mean-spirited these people truly were, and this is not a way to describe it that give trye justice to just how ruthless these people truly are trained to be. I also think that they really enjoy doing this to people.

I called the number left numerous times on my voicemail and requested to be connected to the option number that Mr. Griffin had stated to request. When he picked up, I very politely introduced myself and said that I had received his messages that you had needing to reach me and then asked him how I might assist him. He immediately became extremely loud and rude. He said that he was contacting me to collect a debt that was owed to Gold Cross EMS in the amount of $815.42 and asked me right then exactly how was I going to pay for this today?

I tried to explain to that I unfortunately would not be able to pay anything towards this bill and was just beginning to explain about the Social Security Disability but he cut me off before I could finish and he immediately began to attack my character. He started off by stating and I quote, " I expected this already from you, as I have already spoken to many of your family members and your friends and they have made it quite clear that you are nothing more than a drug addict and a thief." I told him that he could not more wrong and very misguided, and further stated that I could tell him for without a doubt in my mind, that I knew that not one member of my family, and not one single friend of mine, which have few being I am quite picky as to who I choose to spend my time with, would never and I mean never say anything such things about me.

I was really quite in shock. I never expected to hear anything like this from him. Not even remotely close. He continued, "Oh yes you are a crack head and you know, I had quite a colorful conversation with your ex-husband about you and he gave me multiple names and numbers of family and friends to speak with to verify all of this information." I told him that this was his biggest problem, and if this folks were who he was considering to be my family and friends then this his biggest problem as that was my EX-HUSBAND and my ex-in-laws and for very good reason. These friends were his, not mine and I also made it perfectly clear that I had not had any contact with them in probably about 3-4 years few years. I also stated that I owed him no explanation of such, and really should be entertaining his ignorance.

He just continued to say more belligerent and hateful things and then this is when he began the threatening stage. He then states, "If you do not take care of this debt today, then we are going to seize all of your assets and we will sue you. You are going to find yourself in big trouble." I told him then he just needed to go ahead and press on and begin the process to take his steps to get this going then, because I have no way to pay this and I would not stand for being bullied any further. I asked him what his supervisor's name was and he told me his name was Mr. Jones. Mr. Griffin then called me a cracked-out thief and then hung up on me.

I then turned directly around and contacted this guy he said was his supervisor, Mr. Jones. That was a huge mistake. He was even more hateful, and awful. Really, just plain ruthless. After he finished reiterating again that I was nothing more than a piece of garbage with a major drug habit and then he actually had the nerve to say to me that I should just go ahead and do the world a favor by overdosing and rid this world of another cancer draining on our society. I asked hin to please let me know when he was finished with all of his hate speech and ridicule so that I may have an opportunity say a few words. At this point I explained to him that I had started back to school and was working very hard to be in a position to take care of these very situations at some point responsibly.

He began laughing hysterically and then said as sarcastically and belittling as he could, " Oh, wow. Congratulations! You are a fourty-year-old freshman in college. Wooohooo!" He then said, "You know what, I willing to do you a favor." He said, "I will go ahead and split this debt in half with you right now if you will pay $407.71 right now, so how will you taking care of this with bank draft, debit card, or credit?" I told him that I did not have any funds. I was a student and unable to work currently. He said, "I didn't think your sorry a** could do anything anyways." He then said, "I know what your problem is. When you do get any kind of money you blow it your drug habit anyways, so why would we ever expect you to pay your debt? We already know all about you."

I told him that he knew absolutely nothing about me and if he did he would choke on every single word he had uttered out of his nasty horrible mouth. I told him that they would be hearing from me again soon. He Was trying still trying to say just horrible and mean things and I just hung on him. I went online and went to the FTC website and tried a few times to file my complaint against them after reading the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act a few times to make certain that completely understood everything concerning their explicit instructions. I then attempted several times to file a complaint through their online link, but unfortunately their online link was not working correctly. So, I just called them.

At this point, I still had not received anything through the mail from them. I did not know that their company name was Ruben & Rosenthal, Inc,. I thought it was Professional Services and I had given the FTC originally the incorrect address because when I called to get their address their receptionist that answered the phone would not answer that question for me, she immediately transferred my call directly over to Mr. Jones and I had to ask him what their mailing address was and he purposely gave me the incorrect address.

Thankfully though, approximately 3 days later I received a letter from them and I realized it was from them because of debtor and the amount referenced on this letter. I sat down and at this time I went ahead and called the Georgia Governor's Department of Consumer Affairs as advised by the person that I had filed my initial report with at the FTC and also filed a complaint with them. This was an even more enlightening call, because it was at this moment that I also realized that I was actually holding in my hands actual evidence from this company that would allow insight to the FTC and the Georgia Department of Consumer Affairs as to what kind of practices that this company is performing and being extremely bold about it at that.

I also went back to the FTC's website and this time the link to file a complaint a new complaint with the correct information and to include the information regarding the letter just received from them. The online complaint system was working this time so I was able to be much more thorough and detailed. I made certain to reference the fact that I had previously called to file a complaint so they could tie the 2 complaints together. I needed to make them aware of the letter that I had received and also updated the information that would give them the correct information to research and find this company properly.

I then sat down and wrote a very thorough letter to Ruben & Rosenthal, Inc. discussing the phone conversations and made it a point to enlighten them regarding every single portion of the FDCPA that they had violated during our phone calls, concerning their means of initiating contact with me, the improper ways that they were leaving messages on my voice mail, and their making contact with individuals and talking to them regarding the sensitive information pertaining to my debt and their collection efforts. I also let them know very clearly what my personal feelings were about how they conduct business and upon performing some research it become extremely apparent that this is how they encouraged their employees to perform their job. I notified them that I had officially reported them to the FTC and provided them with the report number and also made them aware I had also filed a formal complaint with the Georgia Governor's Department of Consumer Affairs and also provided them with this report number. I wanted them to see that I was not playing and obviously all of the crack and drugs that they are so convinced that I have supposedly been doing had not quite yet completely fried all of my brain cells just yet.

I let them know that I had studied in great detail the Fair Debt Collection Act on the FTC's website and I had copied this straight from that site and pasted into a Word document to print and enclose with their letter for their educational purposes and to make certain they had it for reference. I also utilized this letter to be their formal notice of Cease and Desist notification, and made it perfectly clear that if they did so choose to continue contacting me after receipt of this communication they were now informed that all future communications would be recorded given the spirit of dialogue of our last communication. I also assured them at that point I would most certainly take all of the necessary steps to a file a formal lawsuit against them and everything collected up to this point would be used as evidence against them.

The letter that I received from them that I referenced above was also a threatening letter. This company is beyond ruthless. This is what the body of the letter says verbatim;

You have 24 hours to contact my office in order to stop the collection actions that are about to take place. Govern yourself accordingly. You may call me, Mr. Norris at his 800#. This is an attempt to collect a debt . Any information obtained will be used for that purpose.

Thankfully, this letter arrived when it did. The letter that I had prepared to send to Ruben & Rosenthal, Inc. was also copied and sent to the FTC and the Georgia Governor's Department of Consumer Affairs all via Certified Mail/Return Receipt Requested to all three locations. Georgia actually requested this, especially when I read to them the letter that I had received from Ruben & Rosenthal, Inc. They made it clear that this letter is not even remotely close to what is required by this State to be included in the first contact letter and they most certainly cannot use the threatening verbage either.

I wanted to know exactly what Mr. Norris meant when he was telling me to, "Govern myself accordingly." Thankfully, people such as this do not scare me and most certainly do not intimidate me. They only make me more and more determined as they continue this behavior to not only fight to have their way of practicing stopped once and for all. Then after seeing all of the different websites that multiple individuals have paid for out of their own pockets to tell everyone about their business practices. I have also learned about the numerous times that they have been sued and the still have lawsuits that are pending currently all over the country currently. This right screams that something is very wrong with this system. They do not care that they are being sued. They do not care that they have already been sued and lost repetitively. The penalties for their misdeeds are not hefty enough to truly grasp their full attention.

I am now inspired to not only take whatever action I can currently against them about their actions directly against me in particular, but I want to take it much, further than this. After seeing how it is extremely apparent that this company unfazed by any lawsuit filed against like this. They do not care if they lose, because the consequences for the violations are not strong enough. This is something that needs to be looked into.

I have no intention of "dodging" my debts. If that were the case, I could do that quite simply just filing bankruptcy and people do every single day. I will probably be in debt up to my eyeballs with these medical bills for the rest of my life even after I have reached my educational level necessary to begin practicing, but I will be taking care of my debts properly. I will reach each debtor when I have gainful employment and make satisfactory arrangements for every bit of these debts. I believe in taking care of my problems, and this one the main reasons for making my decision to finally finish my education.

I have thought over and over that it is obvious that this company's largest clientele are Ambulatory services. I just cannot quit thinking about the effect that these people may have possibly have some extremely mentally vulnerable people. How many physically vulnerable people have they literally scared to death? They must be stopped. There is truly no telling how many people they may quite possibly be responsible for driving completely over the edge or causing them to collapse and possibly even worse than that. I just cannot imagine what they may truly be responsible for and want nothing more than to have this type of practice stopped and am truly convinced since I have really studied this fairly thoroughly that the answer strengthening what the penalties are for knowingly and willingly violating the Fair Debt Collection Protection Act These penalties must be so tough that it grasps their attention immediately and give them an opportunity to correct their practices and if they are unfazed and continue their same methods and are caught again they should then be forced to close their doors.

Absolutely no one should ever be treated or spoken to in the manner that I was and I now know that it is clearly no only me that has been treated this way by this company. This is the way they want their employees to conduct their business. I know that I have a heart, ethics and morals. There is not enough money in this world that could convince me to conduct myself in such a heartless fashion. I would never, ever be able to harass, demean, belittle or personally attack someone's character for my paycheck and then sleep well at night. Never!

Although they wanted to make fun that I am a, "fourty-year-old freshman in college." I am not bothered. I am proud. I want to be an example that it not to late to take a different path in life. I do not want to be reliant on the government and I want to work to take care of all of these bills on my own if at all possible. It will not be a "quick fix". I am fully aware that it will take quite a bit of time, but I would rather do it with good hard work of some kind, on my own and with my new craft, which in turn, I will be helping other people. This is something that I have always wanted to do. So they can laugh all they want. I refuse to be bothered by their demeaning and harassing speech. I will be working to try to make some changes for other though. I just cannot quit thinking about how many people they truly may have harmed because they are extremely fragile either physically or mentally. It is absolutely shameless on their part.

When saw this website I felt the absolute need to add my story here. People need to know that this is what is happening and it is occurring all over the country. They have a lawsuit currently pending for extremely similar techniques in the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Kentucky. If you would like to read this story the website is

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#1 Consumer Comment

Similar Situation. Class-Action Lawsuit?

AUTHOR: D - ()

I have been a victim of this company as well, and while I was researching an appropriate action to take, I stumbled upon your complaint.

Two days ago I received a phone call from a blocked telephone number a man left a voice message stating that his name was "Mr. Williams" and I needed to call him back.  No first name or company name was given.  Naturally, I didn't reply.  The next day I received a phone call at 7:53AM (first violation) from a local phone number, and it was the same man who left a voice mail.  About a half hour later, I received a call from my "Mom".  However it wasn't my mom on the line, it was Mr. Williams somehow spoofing my mom's phone number.  This was the first time we finally spoke.

Mr. Williams informed me that he was representing my gym, and stated that I owed his client somewhere in the neighborhood of $1,100 (i forget the exact amount).  The gym he was referring to, I was three months behind on.  I don't know of a single gym that costs that much for three months.  He then went on to explain to me that if I did not have $1,100 by 3pm, that he was going to send Deputies to my work to serve me with court papers, "at which point I would be lucky to have a job tomorrow". 

He knew where I worked, what department I worked in, and what my hours were.  He then went on to list all of my credit cards and accounts by name, and inform me of all my balances (in a demeaning tone).  He used a very agressive tone of voice, and when I explained to him that I did not have $1,100 he became irate, and shouted at me that I had until 3pm, then hung up on me.

At this point, my first call was to my mom to find out if she had any knowledge of how this man used her telephone number to get ahold of me.  She stated that she had a few missed calls from him, but had no idea how he used her number to contact me.  She also stated that he had called my uncle and grandfather, and asked them both how to get ahold of me, telling them only that I was in "some legal trouble".

I then called the gym to find out how on earth I could possibly owe them $1,100.  The lady there stated that she had no knowledge of my balance because it had all been turned over to collections.  She said that she vaguely remembered my name, and that there was no way it should have been $1,100.  She told me she would contact their collections department, and also provided me with the name of the company, Ruben and Rosenthal.

Not even 5 minutes after speaking with her, I received another call from "Mr. Williams", this time from a local number.  He was even more agressive with me this time than the last.  I'm quoting this to the best of my knowledge, "This is Mr. Williams.  I understand that you spoke with my client.  The $1,100 was the amount that I have sitting here on my desk.  I didn't make that number up, that number came from my client.  My client informed me that with fees your total should actually be $213, but I'm willing to drop that down to $175, so how are you going to be paying me?" 

I told him that if he would bill me, I would be willing to make a payment as soon as I was able.  Until this point, I told him, I had never received any written notice of this matter, and I needed a bill sent to my address.  He told me that they had sent it to my house, and read off my physical address.  I told him, it needed to be sent to my PO Box, or I wouldn't receive it.  He became very irate at this point, "Look Mr. XXXX, it's just $175!  Nobody is waiting around for you!  You need to send me this money right now... IT'S $175!  Call your Mom, call your boss, call a payday loan, I don't care what you do!  You have until 3pm!", and hung up on me.

I ended up calling back and paying the money; it was a headache I didn't want to deal with.  From my research, I have found several laws that were broken, and I am curious where to go from here.  If you and other people are having these same issues, isn't there some sort of way a Class Action Lawsuit can be started?  I agree with you in that this type of business practice is absolutely unacceptable.  I'm in the middle of filing a complaint with my Attorney General and plan on doing the same with the Better Business Bureau.

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