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Automated Collection Services, Inc. (ACSI) is a third-party collection agencybased in Tennessee. ACSI has received consumer complaints alleging violations of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) such as failure to verify debts.If you have been contacted by ACSI, make sure you understand your rights before responding.
According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), ACSI was founded and incorporated in Tennessee in 1988, and is currently headquartered in Nashville. The BBB established its profile page in 1990. Buzzfile estimates ACSI’s annual revenue at $18 million and the size of its staff at 198 people.
ACSI’s mission is to “invest in its commitment, culture, leadership, sponsorship, and participation for the purpose of providing our clients with the benefits of superior performance, a collaborative and productive relationship, and real-world accomplishments that matter to our clients and their success.” Originally an Accounts Receivables Management (ARM) company servicing local retailers, ACSI soon began offering its services to healthcare providers. Success in healthcare collection led to clients in higher education and eventually government and financial markets. ACSI transitioned from small business to large business during the early 2000s.
Currently, ACSI offers full-service third-party collections for education; state and municipal government; large and small healthcare providers; and private finance including financial institutions, debt buyers, and retailers. ACSI’s education division includes repayment, consolidation, and rehabilitation programs as well as cohort management and administrative wage garnishment for federal, institutional, and private student debt. Their healthcare division addresses self-pay, managed healthcare reimbursement, and third-party billing follow-up.
ACSI cites its free financial literacy education program as one of its strengths. The BBB includes a statement of Additional Information indicating that the BBB has met with the management of ACSI “as a means to assist them with educating consumers and debtors on responding to debt collection attempts [and to ensure] consumers…understand their rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.” Consumer resources on ACSI’s website include links to information about student loans and a link to the Internal Revenue Service website, and can be found by hovering the mouse over the Contact tab and selecting, “Consumer Contacts.”
The BBB has closed 20 complaints against ACSI in the past three years, with 5 closed in the past 12 months. Most of the complaints allege problems with billing and collection issues. Since March 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has received 4 complaints against ACSI alleging problems in “dealing with the lender or servicer.” Justia lists a case of civil litigation in which ACSI was named as a co-plaintiff.
Absolutely. Here are some Sample Cases against ACSI
In August 2016, in the United States Court of Federal Claims, a judge ruled on Motions for Judgement on the Administrative Record. Collection agencies view Department of Education contracts as “‘[t]he most sought-after contract within this industry’ because of the ever-increasing volume of student loan debt that is extremely difficult to discharge in bankruptcy.” This case involved a dispute about the process for awarding these contracts through the General Accountability Office (GAO) and the Department of Education (ED). In this case, ED requested proposals for the award of “multiple Indefinite-Delivery, Indefinite-Quantity (‘IDIQ’) contracts to collect defaulted student loans” to qualifying third-party collection agencies in December 2015. Qualifying agencies were to be evaluated on the basis of three factors: Past Performance (Factor 1); Management Approach (Factor 2); and Small Business Participation Plan (Factor 3). ACSI submitted a proposal according to the guidelines but was not offered a contract in this round of bids. Subsequently, along with 21 other unsuccessful bidders, ACSI filed a protest with the GAO. In March 2017, the GAO sustained the protests, citing unreasonable evaluation by ED of Factors 1 and 2. In May 2017, ED announced its decision to take corrective action by revising aspects of the Solicitation with regard to Factors 1 and 2, initially with no changes regarding commitments to small business contractors, but then to re-open the competitive bid process entirely. Revised small business plans from all offerors would be reevaluated, and ED would be able to consider all three factors of the revised proposals.
In June 2017, ACSI filed a bid protest complaint citing ED’s corrective action as “arbitrary, capricious…an abuse of discretion, and otherwise contrary to federal law,” and enjoining ED from “considering revised small businessparticipation plans in connection with the corrective action and a new award decision.” The government’s Motion to Dismiss ACSI’s complaint argued that “ACSI does not have standing to challenge ED’s proposed corrective action to allow all potential offerors to provide updates regarding small business participation.” Ultimately, the judge in this case decided that “ED should be entitled to take corrective action to address both the deficiencies identified by the March 27, 2017 GAO decision and new information brought to the attention of ED” and denied ACSI’s Motion for Judgement.
Automated Collection Services, Inc. (ACSI)
2802 Opryland Dr.
Nashville, TN 37214-1200
Telephone: (615) 361-6997
Understanding your Debt Collection Rights
The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) and the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) are enforced by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The 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). The complaint above illustrates how these laws can be extremely effective tools to hold accountable collection agencies who fail to adhere to their provisions.
These laws also provide individuals 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.
Seek legal assistance to find the relief you may be entitled to if you are having difficulty resolving disputes with a debt collection agency.
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