Consumer Law

NJ Lawyer, 2 Affiliated Debt Collectors, Agree to $7.9M Settlement With AG of W.Va.

A New Jersey lawyer and his two affiliated Pennsylvania debt-collection companies have agreed to cancel $7.9 million in charged-off debts, delete records of the claimed debts from the credit reports of 1,922 consumers and pay $45,000 in refunds and consumer education costs, under a settlement with the West Virginia attorney general.

Laurence Hecker and the collection agencies, PM Financial Solutions LLC and Account Portfolio Management LLC, were accused of using high-pressure tactics, including threats of litigation, in an attempt to collect outdated and inadequately documented debt, reports the Record.

Hecker and APM also were not licensed and bonded as required under state law, the article says. It doesn’t include any comment from the lawyer or the companies.

Said Attorney General Darrell McGraw: “I will not allow consumers facing dire financial circumstances to be crushed by abusive collection practices. My office will continue our vigorous efforts to enforce the law against unscrupulous collection agencies and debt buyers.”

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