I received a threatening email from a merchant (online betting site BOVADA.COM) that I did business with outside of the United States, stating that I owed them a few hundred dollars and that if not paid "subject to 3rd party collections and credit reporting as per our credit card deposit agreement". Now they also used a 3rd party to process the original payment that I disputed. The 3rd party payment processor is based out of China. Can they send me to a collection agency in the united states? Will the major U.S. credit reporting bureaus acknowledge this and report it on my credit? Please help, Thank you!
Yes they most certainly can sell it to a collection agency in the US and if they have your personal information such as social security number, then they can report that to the credit bureaus as well.
Since you have paid off the claim, hopefully, this will be the last you hear of it. However, for the benefit of others that may view this question, I would always advise the greatest of caution in paying any claim asserted only over email. Because of rampant data theft, one should be very cautious to make sure you are actually paying an entity that is entitled to recover. I fear that some unscrupulous businesses would willingly sell your data so that others can make fraudulent claims.
I would think it unlikely that an off-shore gambling operation would actually place a claimed debt with an legitimate collection agency in the U.S. However, if that did happen, you would have the full protection of U.S. consumer law - including the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act.
The information ("the answer") provided above is for general information and educational purposes only. The answer should not be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. Posting the question and reviewing the answer does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. My firm will ask you to sign a written contract prior to the commencement of any attorney-client relationship. Please call 770 427 5600 or 404 373 1970, if you wish to discuss your situation further. Skaar & Feagle, LLP accepts select consumer rights cases. These cases include, but are not limited to, cases of abusive and unlawful collection activity, unsolicited robocalls or text messages, unfair business practices to consumers and the elderly, credit reporting of false or obsolete (old) information, credit report errors due to either identity theft or mixed files, denial of jobs or promotions due to erroneous criminal background searches and the defense of lawsuits involving consumer debts such as credit cards, auto loans, or consumer loans.
Without your agreement, it is not possible to say what you agreed to. Start there. Have it reviewed by an attorney who can advise you. In all likelihood, the agreement specifically provides for such actions as lawyers have been hired to protect these lucrative business interests. Most collection agencies report on credit reports once they start a collection. That doesn't mean you can't dispute it and see what happens.
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