The absolute WRONG way to go about collecting a debt
Gary Nitzkin November 5th, 2010 No Comments

Erie lawyer Larry D’Ambrosio is accused of orchestrating false hearings held in the mock courtroom to deceive and bully debtors into paying debts. He, along with a collection agency called Unicredit America, Inc. allegedly set up a fake court room in their offices, had people dressed as court officers go out and serve subpoenas directing [...]

Employers – be careful about pulling credit reports on prospective employees.
Gary Nitzkin October 29th, 2010 No Comments

Hiring competent and honest people for your business can be a very tricky thing today. Employees are keenly aware of their rights under federal laws and the questions that you can ask of them. Gone are days of asking a candidate how old he is or whether she has kids at home with her husband. [...]

Collection Agency for Movie Studios is going to get into trouble
Gary Nitzkin October 25th, 2010 No Comments

I just read an interesting article on CNET about a Debt Collection Firm called Copyright Enforcement Group (“CEG”) that is pursuing people who violate the copyrights of movie studios. The author notes that people are bothered that CEG is seeking money damages from people before they go to court and a judgment is issued. I [...]

Senator Franken ain’t laughin’ about amending the FDCPA
Gary Nitzkin October 2nd, 2010 No Comments

I loved Sentator Al Franken when played Stuart Smalley on SNL. He was funny. But…I am not laughing now. Senator Franken has introduced a Senate Bill 3888 just recently that proposes to amend the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. As a debt collector, I can appreciate the need to amend an older law that was [...]

Scam du jour – refuse to take a case and then get blackmailed
Gary Nitzkin July 25th, 2010 No Comments

I was approached by email, last week, by “Lance Davidson” who represented himself as a Gulf war vet living in Indonesia. He presented a passport picture and a semi-burned promissory note allegedly signed by a well known and respected businessman here in Michigan who died a few years back. What are the chances, right? Sorry, [...]

Who looks silly, now, NPR?
Gary Nitzkin July 22nd, 2010 No Comments

I was recently interviewed by National Public Radio (“NRP” to you nerds who regularly listen to it…o.k. I listen to it, too). The reporter from NPR was doing a story about how social media has affected the debt collection profession. As a debt collector, let me just get this out in the open once and [...]

Has the Michigan Court of Appeals given safe harbor to would be debtors?
Gary Nitzkin June 27th, 2010 No Comments

In a recent opinion in Green v Ziegelman, 282 Mich App 292 (2009), the Michigan Court of Appeals took up the case of whether a creditor can pierce the corporate veil of a corporate creditor pursuant to the Proceedings Supplementary to Judgment Act and enter a judgment against the shareholder of that corporate judgment debtor. [...]

The Supreme Court Rules that the Bona Fide Error Defense does NOT apply to mistakes of law
Gary Nitzkin April 22nd, 2010 No Comments

The Supreme Court ruled today, in a 7-2 ruling in JERMAN v. CARLISLE, McNELLIE, RINI, KRAMER & ULRICH LPA. held that the Bona Fide Error Defense (“BFE”) in the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (“FDCPA”) does not apply to mistakes of law.

Attorneys – Beware of the scam d’jour – The over seas client asking you to enforce her divorce settlement
Gary Nitzkin March 29th, 2010 No Comments

In the last few months, I have noticed that I have been getting similar emails from people who claim to be stuck over seas (usually in Japan, they say) and would like me to enforce their divorce settlement. This mornings’ read like this: Name: Jennifer Lunyang Email: Phone: +81-3-3423-8001 Interested In: Dear Counsel, I [...]

Debt Collectors (and lawyers too) take my message before you leave a message you might regret
Gary Nitzkin March 28th, 2010 No Comments

In Foti v NCO Financial 424 F. Supp2d 643 (S.D.N.Y. 2006), the United States District Court in New York properly held that all communications from a debt collector must contain a warning that it is a communication from a debt collector. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) , itself, at 15 U.S.C. 1622e requires [...]

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