Afni, Inc. Fraudulent/unethical collections on old Verizon accounts

Jun 15, 2007
review #79030

Afni abtained information frm Verizon NY regarding unsettled accounts from '93-94. Although the statue of limitations has expired, Afni is seeking to collect on these old accounts. I never lived or recieved mail at the address they have associated with the account they are trying to get me to pay (which is what tipped me off that this might be a scam).

When I called Afni "Brenda", the customer service rep with who I spoke was indignant and rude. So was her supervisor "Rachel," who had the audacity to question ME and the legitimacy of my concern.

After doing some research on collection laws and statutes of limitation I learned that it is not illegal for Afni to send out letters to whomever they like, what is illegal is for them to sue you, demand collection, and report you to credit reporting agencies for non-payment.

In other words, before sending any money to this company, be sure the claim is legitimate (they should provide you with documentation to prove their claim) and check your state's laws regarding statutes of limitation on old non-paid bills. Even if the claim is legitimate you may not be required to pay Afni.

The fact that this company is taking advantage of people's ignorance and intimidating them into sending them money for accounts that may never have existed is highly unethical and, in certain cases, illegal.

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Jul 31, 2008 Wyoming, Minnesota

"July 15, 2008
MINNESOTA ATTORNEY GENERAL LORI SWANSON FILES SUIT AGAINST AFNI INC., AN ILLINOIS DEBT COLLECTION AGENCY
Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson today filed a lawsuit in Hennepin County District Court against AFNI, Inc., an Illinois debt collection agency, for attempting to collect debts from Minnesota citizens who stated they did not actually owe the debts and for failing to substantiate debt that consumers stated they did not owe.
The lawsuit alleges that AFNI used unfair collection techniques to attempt to collect debts that Minnesota consumers stated they did not believe they owe, and that AFNI did not adequately verify the validity of debts to ensure it was collecting the debt from the right people. As a result, AFNI repeatedly contacted Minnesota consumers in an attempt to collect debts, some up to ten years old, that in some cases were not actually owed by the citizens.
“In this troubled economy, many people are struggling to pay their bills. Debt collectors are entitled to pursue payment of legitimate debts, but they must do so fairly and in compliance with the law,” Swanson said.
The lawsuit alleges that AFNI continued collection efforts, rather than verify the legitimacy of the debt, after citizens informed AFNI that it was attempting to collect the debt from the wrong person. In response to AFNI’s requests, Minnesota consumers sometimes provided private information, including social security numbers and
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