Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Debt Collectors Using Facebook To Communicate With Debtor and Debtors Family!

Florida woman contacted by collection agency on Facebook

A Florida woman claims a debt collector went far beyond the usual phone calls in an attempt to recoup $362 she owed on an unpaid car loan, by sending her messages on Facebook and by telling family on the social networking site to have her call the collection agency.
Melanie Beacham, who is suing the debt collection agency Mark One LLC in a Florida court, said she never expected to hear from a collection agency on Facebook, which she used to talk to loved ones and post the occasional photo or funny status update.
"I was shocked when I found out these collectors used Facebook to contact my family because they knew exactly where I was," Beacham, 34, told The Associated Press in an e-mail on Thursday. "I'm angry they caused me so much embarrassment with my family."
A Chicago lawyer, said he had one client who was “friended” on Facebook by a young woman in a bikini. The account turned out to be a debt collector's, something his client realized only when the "friend" posted a message on his wall: "Pay your debts, you deadbeat."
Beacham's lawsuit's states that one of her family members received a Facebook message from a Mark One representative.
"Please Have Melanie D Beacham call me ... Thanks," the message said.
The family member replied by suggesting the person contact Beacham himself.
This kind of exchange could be a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, which states that collection agencies are only allowed to contact third parties to confirm someone's location.
© Copyright 2010 Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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