Universal Fidelity LP or UFLP 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 Universal Fidelity LP?
Universal Fidelity, LP (UFLP) is a third-party collection agency based in Texas. UFLP has received consumer complaints alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA), including using false or misleading language in an effort to collect a debt and attempting to collect debts not owed. If UFLP has contacted you about past due collection items, make sure you understand your rights before you take action.
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Is Universal Fidelity a scam?
They’re legit. According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), Universal Fidelity, LP is a legitimate collection agency, founded in 1991. The BBB established a profile page for UFLP in 1994, and UFLP has been a BBB-accredited business since 2016. Buzzfile estimates UFLP’s annual revenue at $9 million and the size of its headquarters staff at 78 employees.
According to its website, UFLP “is a professional call center and collection agency specializing in assisting creditors with recovering funds while respecting consumers.” UFLP states that it is “a leading provider of nationwide professional collection agency services that …enables… creditor partners to focus on delivering … core products and services by … improving cash flow through UFLP’s call center, billing, and receivables management services.”
Who does Universal Fidelity collect for?
Universal Fidelity provides collection and call center services to a variety of businesses and industries, including automotive lenders; education lenders; financial institutions; consumer retail lenders; and government agencies and municipalities. UFLP also provides direct marketing services and accepts commercial business-to-business accounts.
UFLP offers accounts receivable management and business process outsourcing services that include first-party call center office support and account cycle management. First- and third-party collection services include account scrubbing and skip tracing. UFLP features “tailored customer service,” bilingual agents, and “customized solutions.”
Universal Fidelity states that “compliance is engrained in their culture.” UFLP “offers…compliant business solutions with detailed third-party transparency and state-of-the-art technology…to improve the customer experience.” UFLP’s Consumers page includes links to several financial and regulatory resources, including the International Association of Credit and Collection Professionals’ Ask Dr. Debt website; Credit Karma; MyMoney.gov; the Texas Consumer Hotline; the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau; the Receivables Management Association’s consumer resources page; and information about requesting free credit reports and scores.
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 Universal Fidelity?
As of April 2019, the BBB has closed 7 complaints against Universal Fidelity LP in the past 3 years, with 2 complaints closed in the previous 12 months. Most of those complaints alleged problems with billing and collections. Since November 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has closed 7 complaints involving UFLP. Justia lists at least 5 cases of civil litigation involving UFLP.
Universal Fidelity, LP P. O. Box 5444 Katy, TX 77491 Telephone: (281) 647-4100 Website: https://uflp.com/
Can Universal Fidelity 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 UFLP 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 February 2017, in United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, a judge issued a decision and order in a case alleging Universal Fidelity, had violated certain provisions of the FDCPA. In this case, the plaintiff had “received an initial debt collection letter from UFLP that… included a box that the plaintiff could check to indicate, ‘I am disputing the validity of this debt.’…Following that box was printed, ‘Reason for Dispute (required):’ and then four blank lines where a reason could be written.” The plaintiff filed a suit against UFLP alleging that the wording in the letter violated the FDCPA by “stating that she was required to provide a reason why she was disputing the debt.” Specifically, the plaintiff cited the FDCPA’s provisions that requires a “debt collector to provide the consumer with ‘a statement that if the consumer notifies the debt collector in writing within the thirty-day period that the debt, or any portion thereof, is disputed, the debt collector will obtain verification of the debt or a copy of a judgment against the consumer and a copy of such verification or judgment will be mailed to the consumer by the debt collector.’” In addition, the FDCPA prohibits the use of “any false, deceptive, or misleading representation or means in connection with the collection of any debt.” Attorneys for UFLP offered three arguments to defend their letter. First, they argued that asking for a reason for the dispute was not misleading. Second, they argued that an “unsophisticated consumer” would not find the language in their notice misleading. Third, they argued that the plaintiff had “failed to sufficiently allege that the allegedly misleading statement was material.”
As for the first argument, the court found that if “a debt collector tells a consumer that, in order to dispute a debt, she must do something that she cannot be required to do (here, give her reason for disputing the debt),” such a complaint “states a claim that the debt collector used a ‘false, deceptive, or misleading representation or means in connection with the collection of any debt.’…Therefore, UFLP’s first argument does not warrant dismissal.” As for the second argument, the court cited the FDCPA’s provision that “even though the required information properly is included in a communication from a debt collector to a debtor, the debt collector may not overshadow or contradict that information with other messages sent with the validation notice or within the validation period.” Because Universal Fidelity’s letter did not merely request a reason for the dispute, but actually required the information, the court found that the language was misleading. Third, the court found that the language in the letter could have the result that a “consumer who lacks a reason for wishing to dispute the debt, or is unclear whether her reason is relevant or sufficient…may be dissuaded… from exercising her unfettered right under the FDCPA to dispute the debt. Thus, the court rejected UFLP’s argument that the plaintiff’s claim must be dismissed for failing to plead materiality.” UFLP’s request to dismiss the charges was dismissed, and the plaintiff was allowed to continue with her complaint.
Universal Fidelity 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 UFLP 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.
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Can You Help Me Delete Universal Fidelity from My Credit Report?
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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.