A class-action lawsuit serves as a reminder that upholding a legitimate license is necessary.

The Plaintiff: Tatyana Shulman

The Defendant: American Medical Collection Agency

The Background

After accruing a medical debt, Tatyana Shulman was swiftly sent a letter from American Medical Collection Agency. The letter demanded payment for the debt, stating Shulman would be subjected to additional collection efforts if a payment was not made.

There was a small glitch, according to Shulman. The collection agency, she found, was not licensed as a collector in Massachusetts.

The Basics

Agencies are well aware of the FDCPA stipulation that an agency must acquire a license from the commissioner to collect debt in each state or at least the states they intend to do business in.

Shulman did not see the American Medical Collection Agency on the list of licensed agencies in Massachusetts. As a result, she was (1) concerned she was being contacted fraudulently and (2) less inclined to look into a solution for her debt.

Shulman was suing the AMCA for it's alleged violations not just on behalf of herself, but on behalf of all others who had been contacted by the AMCA in the state of Massachusetts.

The Decision

According to Shulman's attorney, the AMCA regularly engages in debt collection within the jurisdiction of Massachusetts, despite not being registered as a debt collector in Massachusetts.

This can be a common problem and theoretically, easy to avoid. AMCA is now facing legal fees and procedures that will certainly take a toll on their agency.

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