P&B Capital Group LLC 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.
P&B Capital Group, LLC (P&B) is a third-party collection agency based in New York. P&B has received consumer complaints alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) such as attempting to collect debts not owed and threatening to take actions that cannot legally be taken. If you have been contacted by P&B, make sure you understand your rights before responding.
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Is P&B Capital Group a scam?
They’re legit. According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), P&B Capital Group was founded and incorporated in 2004. The BBB established P&B’s profile page in 2005. P&B Capital Group is listed as a collection agency by the BBB. Manta estimates P&B Capital Group’s annual revenue at $6.5 million and the size of its headquarters staff at 75 employees.
According to its own website, P&B “was established in 2004 with the intention of bridging the gap between creditors and consumers.” P&B claims its policies and procedures are designed to “ensure the consumer is satisfied with the resolution, not the creditor alone.”
Who does P&B Capital Group collect for?
P&B Capital Group’s website does not indicate the specific industries for which it collects past due financial obligations, not does it offer specific information about its collection practices. Instead, P&B describes its overall approach to collections. P&B describes itself as a “company that understands that unforeseen circumstances can occur in consumers’ lives, leaving their finances in turmoil.” As a result, P&B “offers consumers resolutions that allow them to pay off their debts in a case-specific fashion, helping them to alleviate the stress of outstanding debt and enabling them to once again get their credit moving in a positive direction.”
Similarly, P&B Capital Group describes compliance “policies and procedures that demand professional and considerate behavior from our representatives at all times.” They also cite several professional awards, including a nomination for “Small Business of the Year for 2008; …and the Certificate of Merit from the New York State Assembly recognizing…achievements and contributions to the Western New York Community.”
P&B Capital Group encourages dissatisfied consumers to submit complaints using their online Dispute Resolution Center. Their Information Center warns site visitors to be careful of information on the internet, which is notoriously unreliable. However, there are no links or references to official consumer protection resources, laws, 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 P&B Capital Group?
The BBB has closed 29 complaints against P&B Capital Group in the preceding 3 years, with 14 complaints closed in the past 12 months Since April 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has received 21 complaints about P&B, and Justia lists at least 4 cases of civil litigation involving P&B Capital Group.
It is illegal for a debt collector to make empty threats to sue you or garnish your wages. It is also unlikely P&B 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!
Can you help me file a No Fee Lawsuit against P&B Capital Group?
Complaints against P&B Capital Group commonly cite fairly serious violations of the FDCPA. In January 2017, a complainant indicated that P&B representatives had contacted him regarding an unsecured credit card debt. When he expressed an inability to agree to repayment terms, P&B allegedly threatened to take his “property including homes and…pension and savings plans.”
Also in January 2017, a complainant indicated she began receiving phone calls “numerous times a day on numerous phone numbers (home, cell, work) but never a message.” When she called the number back to determine the reason for the call, she requested that the representative identify the company and the reason for their calls. Allegedly, the representative “became very irate,” and the complainant received “verbal abuse for about 4 minutes.” Subsequently, the complainant requested debt verification, but the representative allegedly told her P&B had “already sent the information.” The complainant asked the representative to verify her mailing address, but the representative allegedly told her that she knew P&B Capital Group already had the correct information; that “they have verification of when things are delivered; and that the complainant can’t lie her way out of this by saying she didn’t receive the documentation.” The representative also allegedly “blatantly refused to verify or update her address.” After a heated exchange, the complainant hung up, called back, and confirmed with a different representative that they had the wrong address information on file.
In June 2016, a complainant indicated he had begun receiving calls from P&B Capital Group that did not identify the caller. Soon thereafter, he received a voice mail “threatening… a lawsuit in his county if he doesn’t immediately take care of” the delinquency. The complainant had “received nothing in writing, no validation of debt, and this is far beyond the five-year statute of limitations even if it is a debt he may” have owed. The complainant also indicated that the debt did not show on his credit report, so he does not believe it exists.” He concluded his complaint by indicating that the “number is a VOIP number with no legitimacy, so this is more than likely a junk debt collector that has bought information from somewhere.”
P&B did not provide timely responses to these consumer complaints.
P&B Capital Group 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 P&B 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.
“When I first contacted Lemberg Law, I was at my wit’s end, not knowing what to do or how to protect myself against the collection agencies. I felt like I was sinking. After sending in my case evaluation, Lemberg Law quickly threw me a lifeline and turned the tide.”
“Thanks to the staff at Lemberg Law, I have peace of mind again. They worked quickly to find the harassing calls ended and were super considerate when I spoke together. I love the hard work!”
“I am so blessed that during this dreadful, frightening encounter, your company was there to help me. I can not thank you enough.”
Can You Help Me Delete P&B Capital Group from My Credit Report?
We can absolutely help. Call us today.
Share your story
Have you had a bad experience with this agency’s debt collectors? Sound off and share your experience with other visitors in the comment box below.
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.
P&B is one of several firms attempting to collect a debt charged off and sold to a junk debt buyer. I’m a second year law student at the University of London and after today receiving a collection letter from them I would like to share my reply:
Laura a. Gilliam
75 West Street
Warwick, New York 10990
August 18, 2018
Certified Mail/Return Receipt Requested
No. 7015 1520 0000 4227 9713
P&B Capital Group, LLC
455 Center Road
West Seneca, NY 14224
RE: Your File No. 4979611 – Original Account No. 7981924337618532 – Disputed Amount $3594.11
Your unsigned form letter dated August 8, 2018, states the above captioned note has been referred for collection on behalf of Second Round Sub LLC who purchased the original note from Synchrony Bank.
This conclusory statement does not provide the mandatory proof of the identity of the true holder of the alleged debt and therefore, the ONLY person who can lay claim to this disputed contract is the true Note holder in due course and that true Note holder is no longer Synchrony Bank – nor is it by assignment – Second Round or P&B Capital Group.
In this case, Synchrony Bank sold the debt to Second Round Sub LLC thereby relinquishing its interest and therefore, is no longer a real party in interest.
Regarding Second Round and P&B, the law of privity of contract generally states that a party cannot enforce a contract he or she is not a party to, see Gifford v. Corrigan, 117 N.Y. 257, 22 N.E. 756 (1889) (“…recovery by third party beneficiary is based on equities of the transaction…”).
Even if your firm claims to be a party by assignment of the debt – the claim will fail for lack of consideration.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act states in pertinent part: (“…the debt collector cannot collect any amount of money that is not permitted by law or by the agreement … when there is no agreement between the collector and the alleged debtor, no collection can be sustained.”).
Here, there has been no agreement between either P&B or Second Round and Laura Gilliam, and therefore, you are attempting to collect a debt based on fraud.
This alleged debt operates contra to General Business Law §349. In Oswego Laborers’ Local 214 Pension Fund v. Marine Midland Bank, 85 NY2d 20 (“The essential elements of a cause of action alleging consumer fraud in violation of General Business Law §349 are that the defendant (the possible future plaintiff P&B Capital) engaged in a consumer-oriented misleading practice and that the plaintiff (defendant in this case Laura Gilliam) was injured thereby.” (Parentheticals added) … In reinstating the union’s consumer fraud claim the Court of Appeals noted (“…that in enacting General Business Law §349, the Legislature sought to protect the consuming public from deceptive practices aimed at them….The practices proscribed by the statute are those likely to have a broader impact on consumers-at-large.”). Although, aware of a potential flood of litigation, the court concluded in (Oswego) (“…insofar as the bank allegedly steered the union into a less advantageous account without providing full disclosure of the pertinent facts, the plaintiff had alleged a viable claim of consumer fraud.”).
And as the Court of Appeals reasoned in Teller v. Bill Hayes, Ltd. (213 AD2d 14) (“…the typical act of consumer fraud involves an individual consumer who falls victim to a commercial entity or entities which enjoy a ‘disparity of bargaining power.’”).
As of this writing, there is insufficient specificity in your, demand letter. See Marine Bank, 25 Pa. D. & C.3d at 267-69. (“…defendant is entitled to know the dates on which individual transactions were made, the amounts therefore and the items purchased to be able to answer intelligently and determine what items he can contest.”).
Credit card contracts are not transferable and selling a contract extinguishes all rights under the contract unless the Consumer – in this case Laura Gilliam – agrees to amend such contract (a counteroffer) on the terms of accepting a new party – Second Round or P&B – as the holder in due course.
Here – Laura Gilliam did not enter into any such agreement with Second Round or P&B – therefore, neither Second Round or P&B – as a point of law – can legally recover a debt charged off by SYNCHRONY BANK and sold to Second Round.
In other words: in the absence of acceptance of any counter offers, there is no valid and enforceable contract between Second Round or P&B and Laura Gilliam. See Normile v. Miller, 313 N.C. 98, 108, 326 S.E.2d 11, 18 (1985) (“… a counter offer requires the original offeror to either accept or reject the new offer in order to have a binding contract…”); see also Metro. Steel Indus., Inc. v. Citnalta Constr. Corp., 302 A.D.2d 233, 233, 754 N.Y.S.2d 278, 279 (App. Div. 1st Dep’t 2003) (“…no contract existed where one party made an offer, and the other party returned it with changes, and the original offer or never formally accepted the counteroffer…”). Here, in your letter, “…If you are unable to send in the balance in full please call our office at the toll free number below to make other arrangement.” is taken to be a ‘counteroffer’ and is categorically rejected.
Until such time as either Second Round or P&B can provide documentation – acceptable to a New York court of competent jurisdiction – that an enforceable contract exists – legally binding on Laura Gilliam – there is no, cognizable, case for her to answer – put simply, the case is not yet ripe for adjudication.
The United States Supreme Court introduced the ripeness doctrine in Williamson County Regional Planning Commission v. Hamilton Bank 473 U.S. 172 (1985). See also, Sirob Imports, Inc. v. Peerless Insurance Company, 2013 U.S. Dist. Docket No. 13-3144-cv (E.D. NY, 8/2/13) and THE BANK OF NEW YORK MELLON, et al., v. CITY OF RICHMOND, et al., Case 3:13-cv-03664-CRB (N.D. Cal. 11/06/13) (“A district court may dismiss a lawsuit for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. Fed. R. Civ. P. 12(b)(1). District courts should dismiss for lack of subject matter jurisdiction if the case is not yet ripe for determination. Verizon Cal. Inc. v. Peevey, 413 F.3d 1069, 1084 (9th Cir. 2005). The ripeness doctrine is “particularly a question of timing” that is designed to “prevent the courts, through avoidance of premature adjudication, from entangling themselves in abstract disagreements.”).
As of this writing your firm has neither personal nor subject matter jurisdiction to bring legal action against Laura Gilliam, also, you have failed to state a cause of action for which relief could be granted. See Lake Charles Retail Development LLC v U.S. Bank National Association … Case No. 13-44093 (NHL) UNITED STATES BANKRUPTCY COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF NEW YORK September 30, 2014, 18.
Civil cases are decided on the ‘balance of probabilities’ not the more stringent burden in criminal cases of ‘beyond reasonable doubt’, however, in both – the burden of proof rests squarely upon the shoulders of the plaintiff.
Therefore, if your decision is to proceed to legal action in a New York court of competent jurisdiction – I await effective legal service of your complaint. Otherwise, I shall consider the matter closed.
LAURA A. GILLIAM
75 West Street
Warwick, New York 10990-1428
These guys can be beat at their own illegal game – assert your rights.
Jim Gilliam 2L