I've been searching the internet for 8 hours now (5 of which were just through these forums) for an answer that is specific to my sittuation. I have two issues that I need some assistance and information on.
Firstly, my loan info:
Company - Loan taken out through 'Money Mart'. It is a Store Front Operation
Loan Amount - $300 ($255 loaned with $45 Interest)
Paid - Nothing... yet. YES I do have intention to repay. This is probably the millionth time I've taken a loan out through this company cause I am stuck in 'the cycle'. I have been late with them twice before but all previous loans have been paid in full, so I do have history with this company
Residing State - California
Dollar Financial Group (whom Money Mart it a registered service too) has been trying to collect their debt from me since I am now in default on the loan. It was due July 7th 2008 and my life circumstances have not only emptied my bank account but left me so overwithdrawn for so long that I am now past the point of taking out payday loans to get out of debt but now to where I cannot even repay the payday loans to renew them again to scrape by and live. So naturally when I couldn't even afford gas to go down to the store to repay let alone repay it at all they tried processing the post dated check I had wrote them via automated debit to my bank account. (I'll also notate here that at the time I renewed this loan I was not so far into debt that I knew I could not even repay the loan. There was absolutely no intention to defraud or get money I thought or knew I could not pay back)
Obviously based on what I've explained so far the debit was dishonored due to lack of funds. I swear only about two days later the collection calls began from 'Dollar Financial Group'. Understandable, I owe them a legit debt.
Now, here's what I'm trying to figure out.
1. I believe the collection attempts to be a violation of the Fair Debt Collections Act because they are calling anywhere from 10 to 20 times in a single day and always twice in a row (starting 8am till usually about 7pm and by twice in a row for example call recieved at 8:01AM and then again at 8:02AM). So were looking at roughly two consecutive attempts basically once to twice an HOUR... EVERYDAY (minus weekends, in which case the calls are reduced to maybe about 6 calls total in the day). It states in the act:
Section 806(5) prohibits contacting the consumer by telephone "repeatedly or continuously with intent to annoy, abuse, or harass any person at the called number."
1. Multiple phone calls. "Continuously" means making a series of telephone calls, one right after the other. "Repeatedly" means calling with excessive frequency under the circumstances.
However, even though this tries to clarify itself with it's definitions I still am not clear if my sittuation falls into this catagory. Who or what EXACTLY defines "excessive frequency" and is that what I have described my sittuation to be?
If so, then what are my options. I mean to make them stop and also is there any sort of legal action that I can take?
2. They have tried to automatically withdraw the funds from my account via 'automated debit' method now 4 times (1 of those attempts was the inital payment collection attempt, however instead of trying to cash the check they used the automated debit). The loan agreement I signed states:
Check Reguirements. Lender is authorized and agrees to defer negotiation, deposit and presentment for payment of my check dated Friday, June 20, 2008 until Monday, July 07, 2008. If I fail to pay the amount due on or before the due date in cash or by cashier's check, Lender may deposit my check or, at Lender's election, initiate an automated debit entry to my bank account for the amount owing, which I direct my bank to pay. I understand and agree that this right does not constitute a security interest. I may terminate this authorization by notifying Lender in writing in a manner which affords Lender and my financial institution a reasonable opportunity to act on it prior to maturity of my loan. I agree that this authorization is for repayment of a single-payment loan and shall not recur at substantially regular intervals. If a debit to my account is dishonored, I authorize Lender to initiate an additional debit as repayment of the dishonored item, at Lender's convenience, which I direct my bank to pay; such debit may at Lender's option include the dishonored-item fee referred to below, or Lender may initiate a separate debit for this fee.
Now I have read in multiple places on the web and this forum about revoking automatic fund withdrawls, and getting the processor involved ect. However based on the terms that I signed to it doesn't mention any right to revoke this option if you have defaulted on the loan. It also says I authorize them to do an additional debit if the prior attempt is dishonored but it does not clarify if that is allowing them one attempt or unlimited attempts. What options do I have? Can I still revoke their right to automatically debit my account? Is there any laws in my state that limit the amount of times they can do this to me? Is there any laws that state that they must specifically disclose in the loan agreement how many attempts they will make, for what amounts, and dates they will do this???
I called my bank (Bank of America) and placed a stop payment on the check I wrote them after their their third automatic debit attempt and also placed a supposed block not allowing any more automatic debit attempts from 'Dollar Financial Group' in which I was charged a $20 fee for. I didn't call Dollar Financial and ask/tell them at all because I didn't want to deal with the collector and their tatics to collect the debt just yet due to my severe disability concerning mental illness. I knew I would not be able to maintain my wits and handle the call correctly, also possible result of aggervating my mental state leading to in some way initiating in an act(s) that would harm myself or my property and land me in an institution a SECOND time (first time was a result of a downward spiral of being overwhelmed by debt and collection attempts)
Sorry this post is so long and probably gotten way to personal but I just want to make sure I get accurate information that is applicable to me and my sittuation. Also, my next step after gathering my rights and what not is to contact or begin some sort of debt management because this is not even the start of my debt. It's now out of control and like I said, I suffer from mental illness and am in no posistion to handle this on my own.
Side Note, and just some bank information for those wandering - The 4th automatic debit attempt they made was on September 3rd which just happened to be the same day as my automatic deposit from Social Security for my disability income. The charge went through. When i called BoA and asked 'WTF, how did this happen and give me my money back!' they said it went through because I stated to block auto debits from 'Dollar Financial Group' and they sent it through as 'DFG'. I was refunded my $20 stop payment fee, and initiated a claim with the fraud department because they said it was the only way I might be able to recover the funds. I was suprised when without even yet receiving the claim form from BoA to dispute the charge, the next day the funds were back in my account! I had almost lost all hope in BoA, amazing they did something customer proactive.
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