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mel harris and associates / told a account was paid in full. now my bank account is froxen and they claim i owe them 850.00 dollars

1 116 john street 10038New York, NY, United States Review updated:
Contact information:
Phone: 12125714900

This company is claiming i owe them 852.00 . I paid them on my mothers credit card back in 2007. Today i went to take money out of my bank and they froze my account. I proceded to contact the law firm and they are telling me i still owe them money and my account will not be unfrozen. The women mrs. Davis hung up the phone on me twice and now im on hold trying to contact them again. according to there records i made a agreement of 900.00 down and promised 150.00 a month. If i knew there was more debt on this account i would of paid it in full. When i first called back in 2007 they said they would SETTLE at 900.00. Please something must be done. This is unfair business pratices and i thought America siuations like this were illegal.

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Db
  31st of Oct, 2008
Agree Disagree 0 Votes

I totally agree with you - I owed $2400 (credit card collections). They not only froze my checking account, they also took some of my child support money out (which is against the law). So I reported them to the Attoorney General's office here in New York. They in turn called me back and told me to file a complaint against Mel Harris with Appellate Division regarding Attorney complaints, which I did. They (Mel Harris) in turn not only took the $1200 out of my checking, on top of which they are now garnishing my pay to the tune of $150 every 2 weeks. I have already paid them back the balance and then some ($1400 - I only owed another $1200). I am going to file another complaint against them and their underhanded dealings with clients. I want to wish you good luck, but consider filing a complaint with the NY Bar Association, Better Business Bureau, Consumer Affiars and the Attorney General's office - maybe someone will FINALLY stop these idiots. (Also you can try to contact Sen. Charles Schumer's office if you want to make some real noise.)

Si
  2nd of Dec, 2008
Agree Disagree 0 Votes

This is common for these characters. They froze my account with no notice claiming I owed another ### debt collector (NCO) for a debt that was already transferred by me and payed off 3 years ago. Ok guys. here is what you do:
Daniel-Go to the court where the judgment was entered and file an Order to Show Cause with the clerk. They will walk you through it. This basically says that you want the case reopened because a) you wern't properly served and b) you have a valid defense (e.g. you already paid). If you are SURE you paid in full, do this NOW before they start taking money from your account or garnish your wages, even if you don't have all your paperwork together. I did this and got the judgment vacated and the levy lifted without definitive paperwork. Start getting your stuff together immediately. If you or your mom don't have the card statement showing payment, then request a copy from the credit card issuer (the one you used to pay with). If its your moms card she'll have to do it. An affidavit (sworn/notarized statement) from your mom saying she used the card to pay this debt for you may be helpful as well. If you don't have all your papers, you'll have to go to court twice, once to lift the judgment and again to prove you don't owe. You're in New York yes? NYC civil court has free classes/consults for people being sued by debt collectors who can't afford attorneys. In Queens county (where I am) its from 2-4 Fridays. Take everything you have re proof with you if you go. Best of luck.

Diane-Can't speak as well to your situation as mine didn't go that far. If you have their original dunning letter showing the amount and your payment records showing that you already payed that amount, I would consider filing criminal charges against them as you can then prove they are just stealing your money. I'm guessing the FBI would be your best bet though you could go to your local precinct and get their opinion first. I'm thinking extortion maybe for the official crime (the legal definition would be important here). If you can get someone from Mel Harris on the phone (slim chance I know) record the conversation with you explaining the situation and their response. NY is a 'single party state' which means the recording is admissible in court even if you don't tell them you are making it. Also send a letter stating your position to them by certified mail so they can't claim it is a clerical error and they were never informed by you. You might also try complaining to the Department of Consumer Affairs on the website NYC.gov. They regulate 'most' debt collectors in NYC though some try to slither around the regulations. If (S)Mel Harris does fall under their jurisdiction, you can ask them to step in and mediate the dispute without having to resort to suing the ### yourself.
Your other advice to Daniel re complaining to the Bar, FTC etc. Is spot on but unfortunately very slow. I'll be doing that in my case as well. There is a pending class action suit against these creeps in CA (search this site for the story) and I am looking into filing one here as well. If we can hit them with multiple class actions in multiple jurisdictions, we can turn the tables on them ! All the best guys, and feel free to email me with any questions or info.

P.S.-Oh yeah, gotta do the disclaimer. I AM NOT a lawyer and cannot give you legal advice. Just offering some options for you to consider.

Do
  2nd of Jul, 2014
Agree Disagree 0 Votes

I have sent documentations that I'm on SSD, and that I make less than 217.00 a week in gross wages. It seems like they do like to get blood from a stone. DS Roch, NY

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