Tax ID Theft

For the 14th consecutive year, identity theft was the top consumer complaint made to the FTC. Of these complaints, one tpe stood out for me: tax-refund id theft. I’d never heard of this one, but this seems to be a serious problem on the rise. As explained by the FTC: The Treasury Inspector General for […]

Credit Report Scams

I say (write) again, the FTC is a pretty awesome website. Here’s a good article on how to recognize credit repair scams. The article highlights these signs: You’ll know you’re encountering credit repair fraud if a company: insists you pay them before they do any work on your behalf tells you not to contact the […]

ID Thieves are Everywhere

When it comes to identity theft, you might want to keep your friends closer than your enemies. The person stealing you is could be someone you know or who you deal with on a professional or official business. According to, unlikely identity thieves include relatives, police officers, court workers, friends, and potential employers. When […]

Good Debt Buyers

There are good debt buyers. The website Strike the Debt (motto: “you are not a loan”) runs the Rolling Jubilee project. The Rolling Jubilee is project of Strike Debt where we buy debts for pennies on the dollar. But instead of collecting on that debt like a debt collector would, we just abolish it. So […]

Credit Score Dinged by Online Criticism

I’ve researched this, and still have trouble believing it. The website fined a customer $3,500.00 for criticizing the company on the site The fine was charged to the customer’s credit card. When she didn’t pay the charge, this negative info got reported to consumer reporting agencies. As a result, the customer’s credit score […]

The Downside of Improving your Credit Score

Raising your credit score has, well, scores of benefits, such as better access to credit, the ability to get more favorable rates, and an increased chance at employment and housing. For those with delinquent debt, there’s a downside. Your improved credit score makes you a target for collection activities. Consumer reporting agencies market services to […]

Reporting Negative Info is a Coercive Tool to Collect a Debt

Debt Collectors and Creditors Report Negative Information on Credit Reports in Order to Coerce Payment of Debts You all know this. But it’s comforting that courts and other authorities recognize it as well: “[R]eporting a debt to a credit reporting agency is ‘a powerful tool designed, in part, to wrench compliance with payment terms . […]

Credit Scores and the Affordable Care Act

Rumors seem to be swirling that your credit score will affect how much you will pay for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obama Care. These rumors seem to have started on Florida TV station with an interview health insurance navigator. According to The broadcast prompted conservative sites like The Weekly […]

Another Article on Credit Reports and Jobs

Here’s another article from ABC News about the importance of credit reports and job applications. The article’s focus is on knowledge and preparation. One 2010 study from the Society of Human Resource Management estimates that 60% of companies checked some (or all) job applicants’ credit reports. This is a practice that many people understandably find objectionable – […]

Two Articles of Note Concerning Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC

For those of you with issues with Portfolio Recovery Associates, LLC, here are two recent articles about PRA you might find interesting. Turnips can bleed: The Portfolio Recovery story A lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in New York last year names PRA among more than a dozen debt collectors and says they pursued […]

Surprising things that Lower your Credit Score

Here’s an interesting article about surprising things that can hurt your credit score. The article explains how the following can hurt your credit: Closing credit cards or account. Debt settlement. Payment plans. Inquiring about old debts. Having a credit limit lowering. Paying off an old collection account. Balance transfers. Neglecting old debts. Cancelling older credit […]

Fake Debt Collectors on the Rise

The Better Business Bureau issued a recent press release alerting the public to an increase in fake-debt-collector activity. According to the BBB records, fake debt collection scams are on the rise. From September 2011-2012, there were 782 complaints. From September 2012-2013, there were 926, an 18% increase from the previous year. While I have no […]