Here is a sample “drop dead” letter that you can send to third party bill collectors. I recommend that you send this by registered mail, return receipt requested so you will know when it was received:
123 Harassment Lane
New York, NY 10023
RE: Account Number:_____________
Last 4 digits of my Social Security number:
Dear Sir or Madame:
I am writing this letter with regard to a debt that you claim I owe. Please allow this letter to serve as my written notification to you:
1) that I hereby assert my rights pursuant to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
2) that I hereby assert my rights pursuant to the Fair Credit Reporting Act
3) that I hereby assert my rights pursuant to Section 207 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Section 407) regarding protection from judgment
Fair Debt Collection Practices Act – as you know the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act provides that I may notify you in writing of my desire that you discontinue verbal and written efforts to collect debt from me. At this point I have no assets, nor do I have any source of income other than Social Security disability. Regretfully, I foresee no circumstance whereby I will have funds to pay the debt that you allege I owe. I therefore request that you code my account as a “charged off” account and discontinue collection on this account. In any case, to the extent that the FDCPA applies, I hereby assert my rights thereunder.
Fair Credit Reporting Act – as you know the FCRA sets limits regarding the time frame that derogatory credit information may be reported. My reading of Section 605 the FCRA suggests that negative information must be purged following seven years. Please be advised that I will review my credit file annually and I expect that your company will remove any negative information about my account at that time.
Section 207 of the Social Security Act – as you know, Section 207 of the Social Security Act excludes from garnishment any future Social Security payments as well as funds already paid to me by the Social Security Administration. As I have no other source of income, all of the funds in my bank accounts come solely from Social Security. Any action by your company to seize these funds by way of garnishment will result in irreparable harm to me.
As noted above, given that I foresee no likelihood that I will be able to produce the funds necessary to pay all or a portion of the debt you assert that I owe, I ask that you put this account into non-payable “write off’ status.
Thank you for your immediate attention to this matter.
Very truly yours,
For over 25 years, Jonathan Ginsberg has represented honest, hardworking men and women facing financial troubles.
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