Consider the following testimonials:
“… Recently they began to call me many time during the day, which is totally harassment, to ask me to make the payment … And they just can’t explain clearly how those charges was applied to the account…” – Ling Z.
“… These people keep leaving me messages intended for someone else and threatening legal action …” – Kristen W.
“… I had a visa car from them (co-branded with Virgin America Air) that I just recently canceled because their customer service representative lied to me and they wouldn’t do anything to correct the issue …” – Daniel C.
These are some of the recent negative reviews for Comenity Bank from the site yelp.com .
Comenity Bank offers credit cards for a large number of stores, including popular apparel ones such as Victoria’s Secret, Ann Taylor, and Abercrombie & Fitch. When consumers default on payments for these credit cards, Comenity Bank calls them for recovery. However, there have been a couple of lawsuits filed against them on allegations that they violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act or TCPA.
Debt collection harassment is a reality faced by many individuals.
What is debt collection harassment by Comenity Bank ?
Collecting debt is a perfectly legal activity. However, when the collection practices start becoming stressful for the consumer, it can be called harassment. The reviews you just read are examples of debt collection harassment.
Comenity Bank has faced several allegations of violating TCPA. Here are some examples of TCPA violations:
- Calling at odd hours and contacting consumers late at night and early in the morning.
- Calling the consumer at their workplace and leaving a message about the debt with the person who answers the call.
- Calling and not identifying themselves or their purpose. Not identifying the entity to whom debt is owed.
- Calling and talking about the debt without first verifying if the consumer owes it or not.
- Not honoring a consumer’s wishes to not call them; not honoring the Do-Not-Call-Registry.
- Threatening consumers with lawsuits that are not applicable to their case. Threatening and intimidating consumers with legal action where none is intended.
- Leaving messages containing details of the debt with people other than the consumer. This could include their relatives, co-workers, friends, and/or neighbors.
- Making details of the debt public and causing undue embarrassment to the consumer who owes the debt.
Comenity Bank Lawsuits and Consumers Facing Nuisance
Comenity Bank has faced a number of class action lawsuits over allegations of violating the TCPA.
As per a lawsuit filed in October 2012 by plaintiff Carrie Couser, Comenity Bank called her four times in a day on her cellphone using an autodialer. The TCPA also regulates the use of autodialer equipment as well as calls made to cellphones. As a result, this was a clear violation. Further, the debt was not verified by the plaintiff, nor had she provided the bank with her cellphone number.
Given TCPA guidelines, they came to a settlement of approximately $8.5 million to be divided among the class members for phone calls received between August 2010 and May 26, 2014. Further, each class member could claim one call per cellphone number.
“Although the TCPA provides for statutory damages of $500 for each negligent violation and $1,500 for each willful violation, it is well-settled that a proposed settlement may be acceptable even though it amounts to only a small percentage of the potential recovery that might be available to the class members at trial,” the settlement motion said.
Other lawsuits faced by the bank include similar allegations of constant and unsolicited phone calls as well as nuisance from text messages and calls made using autodialers. Consumers have successfully won settlements against these.
What should you do?
Consider seeking legal help if you or someone you know is facing harassment in this form. TCPA provides monetary compensation to consumers who can prove harassment. In the case of willful harassment, this compensation can be increased three times. As a result, entities can be fined up to $500 if case harassment is proved. In case willful violation is proved, this compensation can be $1500.
Contact a legal professional as soon as possible if you are facing harassment over the phone. A professional can help you decide how best to prepare a case for your harassment. They can also help you organize your plan of action better, including preparing proof of harassment and submitting requests to stop the call harassment.
Legal Rights Advocates, PLLC is a law firm that helps clients who are facing debt collection harassment from Comenity Bank in any form, including telephone communication. Our team of attorneys, over the years, has helped countless clients get protections from debt collection practices that are deemed as unlawful and illegal under the TCPA.
If you are interested in learning more about how to safeguard yourself better from harassment by Comenity Bank, call us at (855) 254-7841 for immediate assistance.