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There are too many bad DV letters floating on the web, including the one in the DIY portion of this site.
This is how you write a proper DV letter.
1. First off...Read and understand the FDCPA.
Know what you can and cannot ask for.
You cannot ask for....
...Proof that SOL has not expired...that is your job to prove.
...Proof they they are licensed to collect in your state
...Their license numbers and registered agent information
...Proof or copy of contract between the creditor and the collection agency, that they are authorized to collect are not party to that contract or agreement and you are not entitled to it.
...A complete payment history since day one.
2. Write you letter IN PLAIN ENGLISH. Do not copy letters off the internet or throw around legal jargon you do not understand. The CA's know the do not need to quote them.
3. Are you disputing the debt? Or just asking for validation of the debt. This is what the FDCPA states...

"(4) a statement that if the consumer notifies the debt collector in writing within the thirty-day period that the debt, or any portion thereof, is disputed, the debt collector will obtain verification of the debt or a copy of a judgment against the consumer and a copy of such verification or judgment will be mailed to the consumer by the debt collector; and(5) a statement that, upon the consumer's written request within the thirty-day period, the debt collector will provide the consumer with the name and address of the original creditor, if different from the current creditor. (b) If the consumer notifies the debt collector in writing within the thirty-day period described in subsection (a) that the debt, or any portion thereof, is disputed, or that the consumer requests the name and address of the original creditor, the debt collector shall cease collection of the debt, or any disputed portion thereof, until the debt collector obtains verification of the debt or any copy of a judgment, or the name and address of the original creditor, and a copy of such verification or judgment, or name and address of the original creditor, is mailed to the consumer by the debt collector. Collection activities and communications that do not otherwise violate this title may continue during the 30-day period referred to in subsection (a) unless the consumer has notified the debt collector in writing that the debt, or any portion of the debt, is disputed or that the consumer requests the name and address of the original creditor."
Dispute Letter

CA Name
CA Address
City State and Zip
RE: Client Name and Account number
Certified Mailing Number ______________________
Dear Collector
I am disputing the validity of this debt.
(Then in simple english, explain WHY you are disputing the debt. i.e. debt included in bankruptcy, PDL illegal, I am not the correct person, you already paid it or a portion of it, debt passed SOL etc) Enclosed is (any documentation showing you paid, bk numbers)
Since I am disputing this debt, you should not report it to the credit reporting agencies. If you have already reported it, please contact the credit reporting agencies and have this marked as disputed. Reporting information that you know to be inaccurate is a violation of the Fair Credit Reporting Act.
Your name and signature
CC..Original Creditor

Debt Validation Letter

Your Name
City, State Zip
Debt Collector's Name
City, State Zip
Certified Mailing Number ______________________

RE: Client Name and Account number
Dear Debt Collector:
This letter is sent in response to (phone call/letter) received by you on (date). Under the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA), I have the right to request validation of the debt you say I owe you. I am requesting proof that I am indeed the party you are asking to pay this debt, and there is some contractual obligation which is binding on me to pay this debt. Please provide me with a copy of the (card holder agreement, prom note, something with my signature on it)
Your Name and signature
Again, there is no reason to quote laws...the collection agencies KNOW the laws and do not need to be reminded.

Excellent post.
As a collector who had to deal with these letters, just stay polite and to the point. People who send those 15 page letters with 300 questions are just asking for negative attention.
I feel like I have to express that these letters will not delay a lawfirm from suing you, they have already made up their minds. If you are not going to be sued, the letter doesnt matter anyways. If you are going to be sued, it will speed things up.
So, dont use these letters unless you really honestly feel that there is a validation issue. Make sure to do out the math if you think the amount is wrong. If you have 25% interest and havent paid for 2 years, then you have to multiply the amount by 1.25 twice, which is 1.5625 times the original amount. This means if you started at $1000, the actual amount you now owe would be $1562.50.
Why does a validation letter speed up the legal process? Because the lawyers and the CA dont have the documents until either one of two things happens. Either they are authorized to file suit, or you request the docs.
They file complaints in huge batches, and whatever accounts they have documents for will be included in that batch of complaints for the court.
So, as you can see, it doesnt delay any legal action in any way. Out of my last 3000-4000 files, only one person ever proved the amount was incorrect, it was an old lady who had paid a CA and the collector forgot to include a code for the finance department to indicate it was a settlement in full. They just took the amount off the entire balance and kept the file open. When it got to me, she sent me the offer letter, and I could see that the current balance was the same amount less than what the original balance was. Case closed.
So, also keep in mind that the likelihood of you getting some break is almost non-existant. UNLESS YOU REALLY DONT OWE THE MONEY. if you do owe it, its pointless. This is not the way to go about fixing problems.
If you know the amount is right, just dont even attempt to use these letters, it is really bad news for you. There are many ways to go about sticking it to collection agencies and their lawyers, but these letters are not one of them.
If you were planning on using these letters to buy time, this is not the way to go about doing it. The best way to buy time is to get into negotiations. The lawyers are paid by commission, so if they think they may not have to go to court, they will be happy to deal with you. The collectors will also be drooling at the mouth to get that money, so they will deal with a good deal of BS before they will let the files get out of their hands.
If you are trying to delay them, Whatever you do, dont have them submit a request to settle below guidelines, because if you dont pay after they have done that, you not only will not be able to settle under guidelines in the future, and you are flagging yourself to be sued. Just keep them thinking you will pay whatever their first offer was.
One more time for good measure, dont try and use these letters to delay a lawsuit, it does not work that way! Only use them when you really think you need to verify information, or if you really dont owe the money!

Sub: #1 posted on Sat, 10/29/2011 - 10:30

doggzilla doggzilla

(Posts: 16 | Credits: )

Well, not exactly.

A third-party collector filing suit in response to a request for validation of debt is a direct violation of the FDCPA.
How to Deal with Unlicensed/Illegal Payday Lenders - Step by Step Instructions

I am not an attorney. I am not offering legal advice. The information and ideas I share are my opinion only and do not necessarily reflect the opinion(s) of the owners of this website.

Sub: #2 posted on Mon, 10/31/2011 - 11:17

OhioGal1 OhioGal1
Moderators Cum Industry Expert
(Posts: 5253 | Credits: )

These are excellent posts! I too am in the collection business. A few things to note: The FDCPA does not define "verification," so just about anything with a name and an amount will suffice. Also, a collection law firm may very well already have the necessary docs available before the suit decision is made. It depends on the client. Lastly, while a law firm cannot legally respond to a request for verification by filing suit, they can file immediately after mailing the verification.


Sub: #3 posted on Wed, 05/16/2012 - 22:28

TribeFan61 TribeFan61

(Posts: 4 | Credits: )

This a great post with excellent information.

I too used to work in the collection industry and I want to expand on the replies to this post.

You want to be very careful about requesting validation. If you legitimately owe the account, seeking validation is generally not a good idea. I'll explain why....

Generally, when accounts are placed with a collection agency, the only information that is given to the agency are the data points of you and your debt.
They generally don't forward your contract, statements, or other relevant items in relation to validation.

The danger with requesting validation on just debts, is you're requesting the agency that is attempting to collect from you to obtain the information that is necessary to forward your account to a local attorney for suit.

The logic is, if you didn't request the validation to begin with, your account will be WAY more likely to remain in the general population and travel through normal collection cycles that typically lead to less risk of litigation, since they don't have the necessary documentation on hand.

Most agencies are particular with their requests for "backup" from the original creditor. Most agencies generally only request this backup on accounts that appear to be the most collectable.

When you request validation, you're choosing for them. Thus, if they successfully validate your debt, they're now armed with the documents they will need to pursue you legally.

If you're debating seeking validation on a just debt, consider this risk very carefully.
Jared Strauss
Debt Relief A La Carte, Inc

Sub: #4 posted on Tue, 09/25/2012 - 15:19

Jared Strauss Jared Strauss

(Posts: 74 | Credits: )

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