I have asked for written proof/information and they have refused unless I make payment arrangements over the phone including a credit/debit card. I don't recall the incident and I believe it was at least 4 years ago.
Sounds like a scam. Here is a link to an article I wrote about collection scammers and what to do about it. Give it a thumbs up if you find that it was helpful.
I am not your attorney unless you and I have signed a retainer agreement. What I am saying is not legal advice. Do not act on this information without engaging my services, this is for consideration only.
This sounds like a scam debt collector. If they refuse to give you any information about he debt or to show that they are a legitimate debt collector - for example if they do not give you an address for correspondence or payment and won't give you their website - then it is most likely a scam and you should not be worried. You should continue to ask for proof and information regarding the alleged debt and for an address where you can send a letter of dispute. A reputable debt collector will not be so overly aggressive or refuse to give identifying information as they are usually aware of obvious violations of the FDCPA and/or RFDCPA.
Please note my answer does not constitute legal advice, and you should not rely on it in making any decisions. My answer does not create an attorney-client relationship, and you are advised to contact an attorney to obtain legal advice before taking or refraining from taking any action with respect to the matter above.
This may be a scam. You should fax/mail them a written dispute and ask for a verification of the debt.
No proof,no money.
Ask for the state bar number of the lawyer calling or in charge. Check the state bar website to see if that person exists. If not, which they generally are not, contact the unauthorized practice of law committee from the state bar and file a complaint. We take this seriously in Texas and file suit. Check your local recording laws there in "Kalifornia" with a lawyer and if you can record a conversation, do it and take it to that lawyer to see if you have claims to file suit against them. They are most likely hidden and you will never find them but its worth a shot.
They cannot arrest you. They cannot file criminal charges. The most that they can do is to file a police report. And they will not do that. Also, writing a bad check is not a crime unless you forged someone else's signature, used a fraudulent account or commit some kind of crime.
If they are a "law office", what is the name of the attorney? Where are they located? Is the attorney licensed to practice law in California? Or anywhere?
I'll bet that if you walked down to your local police station and attempted to surrender on this "charge", they would turn you away.
In my opinion, a consumer should not make a payment on an old debt unless he or she has obtained validation of the debt (through written documentation) and can determine that the last payment on the account was within the past 4 years. If the creditor refuses to send you documentation, you should be suspicious. Do not make any statements to the effect that you owe the debt -- you may not owe anything to that debt collector, even if the default was within the last 4 years.
This answer is for general information purposes only and is not legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is intended or formed by the posting of this answer. Law Office of Lisa J. Espada * San Francisco, CA *
This is likely a scam and the creditor is hoping you pay them without asking any questions. I would send the creditor a validation of debt letter where they have to prove you owe the debt to them. If the creditor is unable to validate the debt, then you likely do not have to pay them.
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