Advantage Collection Professionals or ACP is a debt collection agency, which receives a lot of consumer complaints to our law firm for debt harassment. Find out who they are, why they might be calling, and how you can stop them.
What is Advantage Collection Professionals?
Advantage Collection Professionals , LLC (ACP) is a third-party collection agency based in Minnesota. ACP has received consumer complaints alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), such as failing to provide written verification of debts and using false or misleading information in an effort to collect a debt. If ACP has contacted you about past due collection items, be sure you know your rights before you take action.
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Is Advantage Collection Professionals a scam?
They’re legit. According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), Advantage Collection Professionals, LLC was founded and incorporated in 2014. The BBB established a profile page for ACP the same day it was founded.The BBB lists ACP as a collection agency. Buzzfile estimates Advantage Collection Professionals’ annual revenue at $598,558 and the size of its headquarters staff at 6 employees.
According to its website, ACP “consistently recovers debts at rates well above the industry average for the simple reason… that they treat …customers with dignity and respect.” ACP states that “the vast majority of consumers are not deadbeats scamming the system as they are stereotypically portrayed, but rather working-class men and women who have fallen on hard times, often through no fault of their own…By treating them as valued customers—not criminals—ACP is able to resolve most legitimate disputes and reasons for delay of payment in a timely fashion.”
Who does Advantage Collection Professionals collect for?
Advantage Collection Professionals collects delinquent debts for medical and healthcare service providers; education lenders; and consumer retail lenders. They also provide check recovery services and commercial debt recovery. ACP “has designed and implemented results-oriented debt-collection methodologies specifically for the healthcare industry that allow them to consistently exceed” industry standards. ACP is “among the best in the business of convincing customers to make good on bad checks.” Finally, “ACP’s expertise in the collection of accounts for retail stores and businesses” has enabled them “to design and implement specific methodologies that have resulted in recovery rates that soar above the industry average.”
ACP’s solutions include “advanced skip-tracing to… pursue delinquent customers who are attempting to run away from their financial obligations.” In addition, “ACP has invested heavily in technology and process improvement to facilitate seamless integration,” including “leading collection software…by Comtech Systems.” ACP also employs a network of attorneys to assist with hard-to-collect accounts.
Advantage Collection Professionals states that they maintain “full compliance with laws and regulations that include, but are not limited to,” the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA); the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA); the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLBA); the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA); all required licensing, insurance, and bonding; and the Minnesota Attorney General Hospital Agreement. However, their website does not provide any links or references to consumer protection resources or enforcement agencies.
Who are we? We are Lemberg Law, a Consumer Law Firm
Lemberg Law is a consumer law firm helping victims of collection harassment and abuse. We are ranked A+ by the BBB. We’ve helped more than 15,000 consumers stop harassment and recover money from debt collectors. Harassed? Abused? Misled by a collector? Call our Helpline today! There is no charge unless we win.
How many Complaints are there against Advantage Collection Professionals?
As of August 2019, The BBB has closed 4 complaints against Advantage Collection Professionals in the preceding three years, with 1 complaint closed in the previous 12 months. Two of those complaints alleged problems with billing and collections; the other 2 complaints cited problems with customer service.As of May 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has closed 11 complaints against ACP. Justia does not list any cases of civil litigation involving ACP.
Can Advantage Collection Professionals Sue Me or Garnish My Wages?
It is illegal for a debt collector to make empty threats to sue you or garnish your wages. It is also unlikely ACP would sue you for a debt you may not owe or they cannot validate. However, debt collection agencies are known to have summoned debtors to court and garnish wages after a default judgement. Contacting an attorney BEFORE this could possibly happen would be a smart move. We’ve helped thousands of consumers fight back against unscrupulous debt collection harassers. Find out if we can help you too today!
in 2017, a proposed class action out of Wisconsin alleged Advantage Collection Professionals, LLC sent a debt collection letter in which it failed to “clearly and unambiguously” state that in order for the plaintiff to invoke her right to get the company to cease collection activities until verification is provided, requests for such must be made in writing. The lawsuit, which alleges violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), claims the defendant unlawfully included language in its collection notice that overtly directed debt disputes away from Advantage Collection Professionals and toward other parties – in this case, the plaintiff’s original creditor and the Minnesota Attorney General. The case argues the purpose of this conduct is to discourage consumers from triggering the FDCPA’s verification requirements.
Complaints against Advantage Collection Professionals cite problems resulting from disputes about the validity of debts and the accuracy of billing and accounting procedures.In May 2019, a complainant stated that ACP had been attempting to collect a debt that was billed incorrectly through his insurance company. According to the complainant, he had received a collection letter from ACP requesting $455.00 for services rendered by an orthopedic office. He stated that “at the time of …services, the orthopedics lab … was provided with insurance coverage information for both the primary and secondary insurance carriers.” He also stated that “an invoice for $455.00 was submitted to the primary insurance carrier; … however, the secondary carrier… verified that the orthopedics lab never submitted an invoice for payment for the remaining balance.” The complainant “sent a copy of the Explanation of Benefits (EOB) from the primary insurance carrier… to ACP showing a balance due” of only $100.00. In addition, “the secondary carrier…allegedly stated that‘an invoice has to be submitted in a timely manner to be considered within the required filing period,’” and that “‘the invoice must be submitted within a year; if not, the charges must be written off.’” As a result, the complainant indicated that “they are not paying the claim” and that the orthopedics lab “never issued him an invoice… for payment.” The service provider is supposed to notify the patient if there is a balance due to give the patient an opportunity to review charges, resolve discrepancies, or make a payment “if deemed necessary.” But the complainant stated that the orthopedics lab “never issued a bill or invoice and …instead …closed their doors and sent all unbilled and unresolved medical charges to collections.” The complainant had spoken with ACP “several times since submitting the EOB from the primary carrier only to be told that he must wait (at least) 30 days for resolution because they are filing a claim with the secondary carrier.” However, the secondary insurance carrier had “already informed him they were not paying due to the orthopedic lab’s failure to file ‘within a timely manner.’”
In response, Advantage Collection Professionals apologized to the complainant for his experience with their client. Because of his “extensive communication with their office regarding this issue,” ACP offered to close the file and “no longer… pursue collection of this account.” However, ACP also said they cannot “speak on behalf of the orthopedics lab.” The complainant rejected the attempted resolution, insisting that ACP send him a letter stating that no further collection activity will be pursued, citing the lack of trust resulting from their mishandling of the account.
Advantage Collection Professionals Calling You?
Federal laws protect you. The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) regulates the behavior of collection agencies by prohibiting actions such as the use of abusive or threatening language; harassment; or the use of false or misleading information to collect a debt. The FCRA regulates how collection agencies and creditors report delinquent debts to credit reporting agencies. Additional consumer protection laws include the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and the Consumer Financial Protection Act (CFPA).
Can I sue Advantage Collection Professionals for harassment?
Yes. If you want to enforce your rights, or recover money for violations — you need to sue. Federal laws provide individuals like you with a means to seek monetary damages in court. For example, the FDCPA allows consumers who have been violated to recover damages of up to $1,000, plus attorney fees and court costs.
“With your help the nagging collection calls have ceased! I was thrilled I was also able to get damages from the collection agency. I am unable to adequately express my joy. I am so thankful I made the call.”
“I would recommend your company to anyone. You have the debt collectors off my back, and I will finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. Throughout the entire procedure your employees were courteous and professional. I was blown away by their efficacy also.
“After speaking to one of the partners, and going over the plan of action, I felt I’d chose the perfect company to go to work for me. He was very accommodating in describing what was going to happen. I would strongly recommend Lemberg Law to anybody being hassled by debt collectors”
“Prior to contacting you, we had tried repeatedly to handle this matter without threatening litigation. In the end, not only were they unapologetic, but they were dismissive – even of an attorney friend who called on our behalf. Sincerest thanks for resolving this matter for us!”
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About the Author:
Sergei Lemberg is a lawyer whose practice focuses on consumer law, class actions and personal injury litigation. He has been repeatedly recognized as the “most active consumer attorney” in the country. In 2020, Mr. Lemberg represented Noah Duguid in the United States Supreme Court in the case entitled Duguid v. Facebook. He is the author of Defanging Debt Collectors, a book that teaches consumers how to battle debt collectors and win.