Vengroff Williams Inc or VWI 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.
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Vengroff Williams, Inc. (VWi) is a multi-service venture capital corporation that also offers first- and third-party debt collection. Based in Sarasota, FL, VWi has received many consumer complaints alleging practices such as abusive customer service; calling people at work to discuss financial matters; and attempts to collect debts not owed, all in violation of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA). If you have been contacted by VWi, know your rights before attempting resolution.
According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), VWi was founded and incorporated in Florida in 1990, and the BBB opened its file on them in 1999. VWi is listed as a corporate collection agency and uses the following alternate business names: Asset Recovery Management; Vengroff Williams Investments, LP; Vengroff Billing Services; Equipment Return Services; and Asset Recovery Management. VWi has additional locations in California, New York, and Illinois. Buzzfile estimates VWi’s annual revenue at $11.7 million, and the size of its headquarters staff at 80 people.
VWi’s website contains a lot of complex business jargon that makes it difficult for the average site visitor to gain a clear understanding of their primary business function. Essentially, they describe themselves as a corporation offering “innovation that drives working capital solutions for sustainable business value.” Active in the insurance, healthcare, consumer packaged goods, transportation, manufacturing, technology, and media industries, VWi acts as venture capital and management partner to enable the automation and “optimization” of the day-to-day operations of their client businesses. This service is sold as a means to increasing efficiency and profitability with the added benefit of freeing business owners to focus “on their core competencies…to simplify, accelerate, and grow.”
VWi provides first-party and third-party debt collection. VWi’s first-party collectors provide Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) services for healthcare providers and are “expertly-trained [to] manage…patient collections accounts with care.” Their “best-in-class” collectors “follow up with patients who owe for copays, co-insurance, deductible or non-covered transactions.” Their third-party collectors are “fully trained on all FDCPA guidelines plus extensive compliance and rigor or applied standards to ensure professionalism and proper collection techniques.” VWi takes the view that their automated processes have the benefit of reducing or removing the “time-consuming and manually intensive tasks [that normally] ensure accurate management of collections processes.”
The BBB has closed 70 complaints against VWI in the past three years, with 17 closed in the past twelve months. Almost all of these complaints allege problems with billing and collection. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has logged 13 consumer complaints against VWI since June 2015, mostly for attempts to collect debts not owed. Justia lists at least 7 cases of civil litigation naming VWI as a defendant.
Absolutely. Here are some Sample Cases against Vengroff Williams VWI
Vengroff Williams believes its highly automated and technologically advanced business processes designed to ensure the accuracy and integrity of the information in its client accounts necessarily result in a better and more effective collections effort. Ironically, many of the complaints against Vengroff Williams illustrate the problems caused by an overly-automated and depersonalized management system. In August 2017, a complainant indicated that he had received collection notices from VWI for $183.39 for a garage door installation charge his ex-wife had bought using her credit card several months earlier. For some reason, the billing information was issued in his name. He contacted a manager at VWI and informed him of the problem, and the manager told him it was likely because he had purchased items at the same store himself, so his name may have automatically come up when his ex-wife provided an address. The manager indicated he would correct the error and send the bill to his ex-wife. Unfortunately, at the time of the complaint, which occurred after his discussion with the manager, and after his wife had filed and discharged a bankruptcy that included the debt in question, he was still receiving collection notices from VWI for the same item. The complainant also contacted the bankruptcy attorney who had attempted to fax a cease and desist order to VWi, but the attorney indicated the fax number was not working. The complainant accused VWi of not looking “closely at this order and just assumed to put my name on this form,” and requested that VWi cease all efforts to collect the debt. VWi responded that they “investigated and reviewed the file based on the claimant’s dispute…closed the file as disputed…returned [it] to the client… [and indicated that] no further recovery efforts [will] take place from our offices.”
Vengroff Williams, Inc.
2211 Fruitville Rd.
Sarasota, FL 34237-6116
Telephone: 1 (941) 363-5200
Understanding your Debt Collection Rights
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the CFPB enforce laws prohibiting unethical business practices such as the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) and the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). The FDCPA prohibits activities such as failing to provide verification of a debt, or using 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 why it is important for consumers to understand their rights before attempting to take action against collection agencies who may have violated these laws.
Private individuals may seek monetary damages in court for alleged violations. For instance, the FDCPA allows consumers to recover damages of up to $1,000, plus attorney fees and court costs. If you believe your rights have been violated by a collection agency, seek legal assistance to ensure you find relief.
If you’ve been harassed by debt collectors, we can help. We will fight for your rights.
The Lemberg Law legal team is committed to holding debt collectors accountable, so complete our form for a FREE case evaluation, or call 844-685-9200.
What Our Clients are Saying
“I would recommend your firm to anyone. You got the debt collectors off my back, and I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. Throughout the whole process your staff were professional and courteous. I was blown away by their efficiency as well. Thank you guys so much!”
“I just wanted to take a moment to say thank you! Being in debt is hard enough without being harassed by collection agencies, but thanks to you I no longer have to be a victim. I did not know what to expect when I emailed your company, but from the beginning you guys were on the ball.”
“I would like to thank you and your staff for all the help you’ve provided to me. Honestly, you have a wonderful staff that has dealt professionally and been very empathetic at a time in my life when I hit a speed bump.”
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