Friday, July 17, 2009

Filing Class Action Suit Against Debt Collectors

In California, debt collection companies do not have to register for a license nor are they subject to state financial regulators. In other states they do. As a result, there is nothing to prevent a debt collection company from setting up operations in California or in states with like arrangements and to engage in unscrupulous collection tactics without concern for any consequence from a governing agency or board. They are however, subject to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and can be sued by the individual consumer who has been subject to their abuses. The consumer can also report them to the state Attorney General’s office, and with enough reports on file, action may be taken by the Attorney General’s office.

The individual consumer can stop an abusive debt collector dead in their tracks with an attorney well versed in the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. If a collection agency has policy and practices across the boards that violate consumer rights under the FDCPA, and given the right circumstances, a California class action lawsuit can be brought against that company which can have the net effect of putting it out of business all together.

No one can stop these vicious, abusive debt collectors unless the abused consumer reports thes abuse to a consumer advocate who focuses on Fair Debt Collection Practices claims.

Once these abusive debt collection agencies have been forced to close their doors, they can open up again the very next day. This is basically true of any business that has been incorporated, or formed as a limited liability company. The same executives that operated a scandalous collection agency can turn around and form a new company and begin all over again. If they were required to be licensed, their history as collectors would no doubt come into play as the state was deciding whether or not to allow to them to open for new business. Sphere: Related Content

Monday, July 13, 2009

Settling a Thriller Estate in California

And the battle begins…..

When the will and trust of a celebrity like Michael Jackson become headlines, it’s a great reminder to the rest of us to get a good estate plan in place and keep it in place. The controversy about whether he had a will or not, whether he had a trust or not and who has a copy of the latest will or trust has just begun. Jackson’s family will probably be entrenched in court debates about his intentions, his capacity and the existence of conflicting estate planning documents for years. The certainty in this upcoming circus is that the lawyers involved will prosper. The probate code requires their fees to be paid before the beneficiaries or the creditors of the estate get paid. Only tax liabilities have priority over the attorneys getting paid.

Most of us will never be front page news, but the risk of this type of nightmare is very real if you do not take steps to prevent it. Having a will is good. It tells the world (literally, since it must be lodged with the court upon your death, and thereby becomes public information) how you want to dispose of your assets and who you want to be the guardians of your minor children. Even better is having a trust so that your family will not have to deal with your assets going through probate. Instead, they will be able to settle your affairs in a much more private, speedy and confidential manner.

Avoiding probate is probably the number one reason people come to visit Generations and speak with our Sacramento estate planning attorneys about having a trust done for them. We have helped many of the “superstars” of Sacramento create trusts that allow their families to settle their estate without the prying eyes of the ever-curious public. Should your privacy be any less protected?

Do not leave your family without the power to distribute your assets in a timely and private manner. If you fail to do so, only the lawyers will prosper.

Please contact our Sacramento estate planning attorneys today to discuss how best to secure your estate and to ensure it is passed on to those who matter most to you. Sphere: Related Content