Collection agencies are turning to social media not only to track you down, but to search through profiles for evidence of shopping sprees, vacations, and even employment information…. Dana Karni: Going to Facebook and trying to find the profile or friends of someone and trying to go that route is really problematic because the likelihood is very great that the debt collector will be revealing, in that process, that they’re attempting to collect a debt. And that, in and of itself, is an abusive collection tactic…Read more

Collection Agencies Using Facebook to Track You Down, by Ned Hibberd, Fox 26 News, January 2011

Client of Karni Law Firm, P.C. talks to The Early Show. “Monica Johnson was being harassed and threatened by debt collectors until she fought back and sued. As Susan Koeppen reports, this is one of many similar cases…”Read more

Getting Abusive Debt Collectors Off Your Back, by Susan Koeppen, CBS Early Show, May 2010

If you’re overdue on your bills, you may know all too well the headaches of phone calls, letters and threats from creditors. Now some debtors are hitting back by suing when debt collectors violate their rights…“If there’s a possibility of being sued on the debt, unless you’ve got a huge case in terms of damages, you’re likely to open that Pandora’s box where otherwise they might not have thought to sue you,” said Dana Karni, a consumer debt attorney in Houston…Read more

Sue the debt collector, by Katherine Reynolds Lewis, MSN Money, March 2010

Families facing mounting debt and uncertain economic futures often also face increasing calls and letters from debt collectors. Now, consumer debt attorneys say those contacts have become more aggressive, and a new survey finds abuses of the laws that protect debtors are common… Houston-based consumer debt attorney Dana Karni said she is seeing an escalation in aggressiveness of the calls…Read more

Survey: Debt Collection Calls Growing More Frequent, Aggressive by Marcia Frellick,, January 2010

In recent months, there has been no shortage of reporting that the nation’s financial institutions have taken a hit. With all the talk about bailouts, recession and unemployment, at the end of the day it comes as no surprise that consumers have been hit hard, too. On average, American families are straddled with over $8,000 in debt stemming from credit cards alone. According to the Federal Reserve, the total amount of consumer debt in the United States reached $2.56 trillion at the end of 2008. Last summer, the National Association of Attorneys General released its report of top ten consumer complaints, listing abusive debt collection as the number one complaint nationwide for 2008…Read more

Consumers vs. Debt Collectors: Consumer Rights Under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, Dana Karni, The Houston Lawyer, January/February 2010; also published at: Journal of Consumer & Commercial Law, Vol. 13, 2010


Watching for debt collection scam red flags

Author: Amy Davis, Investigative Reporter/Consumer Expert,
Cody Schultz, News Producer

HOUSTON – Harassing debt collectors are one of the top complaints for federal investigators.

In many of the cases, the person on the other end of the line didn’t even owe money. Some collectors hope the consumer can’t remember, and scare them into sending them a payment. In 2013, the federal trade commission received more than 204,000 calls about debt collectors, like this one.

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Local 2 investigates abusive debt collectors

HOUSTON – Local 2 investigates abusive debt collectors. The Federal Trade Commission received a record number of complaints about debt collectors last year — nearly 181,000. There are laws in place to protect you from collectors who go too far, but you may be surprised at who we discovered may be on the other end of the line.

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Fighting mistakes on your credit report

Author: Amy Davis, Investigative Reporter/Consumer Expert,
Cody Schultz, News Producer

HOUSTON – It’s the three-digit number that can affect how much someone pays for a car, a house, even insurance. Credit scores dictate an incredible amount in our lives, yet errors can be hard to fix.

The website Annual Credit Report is key to deciphering credit problems. Experts recommend checking each item on a credit report.

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Houston-based debt collector shut down

FTC: Company lied, bullied & harassed
Author: Amy Davis, Investigative Reporter/Consumer Expert,

HOUSTON – Bullying, lying and harassing — that’s what federal investigators say one Houston man and his debt collection company were doing.

The Federal Trade Commission has shut the business down and seized all of its assets.

The company used several different names including Cole, Tanner & Wright, Debtcom, Inc

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