I've now got two civil lawsuits under my belt in dealing with debt collectors. The whole process was not at all fun, pleasant or enjoyable. But I got paid in the end and I now tell everyone that will listen to me that each and every time a debt collection style person contacts you, treat it as a terrorist holding you hostage. Go full hostile. Demand everything in writing, demand paper trails, and learn the tools you have under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Be firm but polite, never use foul language, and for the love of the Spaghetti Monster, KNOW THE DAMN LAWS. I live in a one party state so I can record everything, your laws may be different. Paper and recordings will always win over he said-she said sort of arguments. DOCUMENT EVERYTHING. Second case I went to the judge and had all my paperwork and about four hours of phone recordings. The judge made a comment that he had not seen one of these cases so well prepared before and I got the max at the time.
With so much paper being bought and sold and no oversight, and with all the massive data hacks, Equifax, everything, I've been telling people to get a Credit Karma account under an email only used for credit reporting, banking etc. They offer free monitoring. They also send email when new loans are taken out in your name. If you have a credit score over 700 or so, expect a wave of identity theft in your future in 2018. This time next year the debt collectors will be out in full force as all these stolen identities' accounts come up for demand payments.
Fuck Debt Collectors. Vermin, all of them.