TULSA, OK, Jan 03, 2012 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) — “The world of debt collection will never be the same,” says Bill Bartmann, CEO and founder of America’s most consumer-friendly collection agency, CFS II.
According to Bartmann, “Debt collectors have developed some very nasty habits over the past five years or so. They sue millions of people every year based on nothing more than a name on a list. They mislead courts about facts they cannot prove. It is a practice of ‘sue ‘em all and let God sort them out.’”
Bartmann believes standard debt collection is an abuse of the judicial process, which is wrong — and must stop. He also promises that there is a coming tsunami that will change the way debt collectors do business.
Bartmann and other conscientious debt collectors have started a national reform initiative and have created the debt collector pledge. They are inviting all other debt collectors to join in signing The Pledge. Indeed, 216 debt collection companies have already done so.
The key elements of The Pledge are:
1. To never attempt any collection effort on any credit card debt that is beyond the statute of limitation.
2. To never file a lawsuit for collection of credit card debt.
3. To never charge interest on a credit card debt that was charged off by the original issuer.
4. To never attempt to contact the consumer regarding credit card debt by telephone more than two times in any one 24-hour period.
5. To never resell credit card accounts to anyone who has not signed this Pledge.
The public is just flat tired of the scandalous behavior of debt collectors. There is a wave of pushback from the state legislatures, the various Attorneys General and Congress. In the past year, several states have changed their laws to make debt collectors behave — North Carolina is a great example.
The Attorneys General of a number of states are cracking down on behavior. Examples are Lori Swanson in Minnesota, Roy Cooper in North Carolina, Greg Abbot in Texas, Lisa Madigan of Illinois, Martha Coakley of Massachusetts and Darrell McGraw of West Virginia. Each of these AGs has thumped debt collectors for the way they have treated consumers.
“In the U.S. justice system, you’re innocent until proven guilty,” says Bartmann. “The same should be true in collections. Nine out of 10 times, customers want to pay you. If they do not, you need to start with the assumption that they have valid reasons.”
Bartmann knows that his claims and arguments are unpopular in the debt collection industry and he generates a lot of criticism from his competitors and the industry trade associations. “My goal is not popularity. My goal is to make debt collectors treat consumers in a civilized manner,” he concludes.
About Bill Bartmann:
The Harvard Business School published a case study on Bill Bartmann’s collection business, CFS. He is a best-selling author and was named national “Entrepreneur of the Year” by NASDAQ and the Kauffman Foundation. His new debt collection company, CFS II, is located in the CityPlex Towers in Tulsa.
646.507.5830 or 646.339.2320
SOURCE: CFS II