13 InvestigatesScam Alert


CONTACT 13: How to fight against collection scams

Posted at 11:51 PM, Mar 31, 2017
and last updated 2018-11-21 17:46:07-05

A Las Vegas valley man felt threatened after a collection agency called him, claiming he owed thousands.

Bill Everett was told he had an outstanding credit card debt of more than $9,000. The caller had Everett's correct information, including a partial social security number. But they needed his current address.

Everett says something didn't feel right and he refused to give them any more information.

"She said well I guess you'll just miss your court date and I'll do a silent judgment against you," he said. "Click, and hung up on me."

Even with the threat of court, Everett wasn't going to budge since he knew he didn't have any outstanding debt. He called Wells Fargo to confirm that.

"They said no, we don't have anything like that on you. You're in good standing," Everett said.

It turned out to be a scam. But Everett was still concerned and that it could potentially damage his credit.

If you receive a harassing phone call from a debt collector, Michele Johnson with the Financial Guidance Center says they need to prove you owe the debt and in writing. And if you don't want to give out your address, you can give them your email.

"You can confirm your address after they give it to you, your social after they give it to you, your date of birth after they give it to you," Johnson said. "But don't volunteer any personally identifying information."

If the caller makes any threats, consumers are protected under the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act, which limits the number of calls you can receive.

You can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission here.

13 Investigates - Send us a tip
Do you have a story idea or tip for 13 Investigates? Fill out the form below.
Are you willing to go on camera?