Portfolio Recovery Associates/Capital One

by Adrienne

Dear Sir or Madam;

I am being harassed by Portfolio Recovery Associates. I had a credit card from Capital One with a maximum limit of $250. I had previously called them quite some time ago and they could not find the account. I had left a good job in 1996 and had a very difficult time. In 1999, I was hit by a car just before going into the military and was left partially disabled. It took me 10 years to receive my disability and as soon as I did in December, I sent Capital One a payment of $200 (initial card was $250limit). That was December 15th. When my bank credited Capital One the $200, Capital One could still not figure out what they had done with the money. In January, my bank suggested I file Fraud Papers against Capital One. I wanted to wait and see if the computer found the account. Finally, a woman who was a supervisor found it through the # put on the check that was deposited to my bank. I contacted Portfolio Recovery Associates and they had still not received my deposit of $200. I later went on the internet to create an account and start paying the balance. A woman contacted me from Portfolio Recovery Associates in the beginning of January after I contacted them. She wanted to set up a minimum "hardship" case account of $27 mo. I have to wait until the first when my next check comes. I have the envelope ready with the check in it for the first. Portfolio Recovery Associates has contacted me three times this month without waiting for my payment. They have received the $200 from Capital One (25th?). The woman that called the other night was hung up on because they had not waited until the first as scheduled. They called again today...the woman was nice, but a "gentleman" in the background started threatening me....saying he needed $200 mo. I am on a fixed budget of SSI disability. I receive a limited income each month and I contacted them(Portfolio Recovery Assoc.). He said he wanted a check over the phone and wanted my check. I explained to him that he needed to give me time for the payment...they had just received the Capital One money I sent to them. He started threatening me saying he was going to take it out of my account every month and he would get it in full. He said I had to give him the routing #...the balance is only $1600....not that bad to threaten somebody over it. I repeatedly told him that he had to give me the option to pay. He would not stop threatening me and said he would just take the money from my account. I finally hung up and still have my payment ready for the first. I am going to report him to my bank and the Better Business Bureau. He was very rude and mean and has just received $200 from me...and I contacted them. I am very disappointed that someone who runs a business could be so un-businesslike in their transactions. I am the one who contacted them and attempted to set up a payment schedule, not the other way around.

It is very unsettling that someone like him can affect what other creditors think, by ruining someone's job so they can't pay their bills in the first place. If I hadn't been forced out of my job in 1996 by a company that prints Sears catalog, I would have probably received the Un-employment Credit Insurance I purchased just before I left my job. No wonder people hate banks.

I am currently returning to school to complete a degree. I already have some college and at the end of 2 years will hopefully be able to obtain gainful employment and be less in debt.

Comments for Portfolio Recovery Associates/Capital One

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Jan 28, 2010
your experience with Portfolio Recovery
by: Gerri


I find it quite sad that you are trying to do the right thing by paying off your debt, even though after ten years of no payments it's likely that the statute of limitations had expired. If so, that means that if you did not pay, there would be nothing the collector could really do to force you to pay.

In addition, if your only income is disability income, and you don't have other assets, then you are likely "judgment proof." That means that even if if the collector took you to court and successfully sued you, there would be no way for them to force you to pay.

So it sounds to me like they are lucky that you paid anything at all!

Adrienne, there are a number of issues in your email that raise red flags for me and lead me to be concerned that the debt collector may have broken the law. I would really encourage you to do two things:

1. Read the first chapter of Debt Collection Answers online for free on our website. I'd like you to at least get an overview of the federal law that protects you against unfair debt collection practices.

2. Talk with a consumer law attorney with experience in debt collection cases. If the collector has broken the law, you may be entitled to damages, and the the attorney may be willing to represent you on a contingent fee basis, which means there is no cost to you unless you win. You can talk with a consumer law attorney with experience in debt collection cases. Learn how to get low cost or FREE legal help with your debt collection problem here.

Adrienne, it seems to me that you have done everything you can to honor your debt with Capital One, despite your very difficult circumstances. There is no need for you to put up with unfair and possibly illegal harassment. Get some help so you can put this behind you.

Please let us know how this turns out for you!

PS: This debt is too old to be on your credit reports. If it is there, you must dispute it immediately.

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