When a debt collection company or buyer shows up in District Court, they are usually just going by a person’s name, last known address and Social Security number to obtain a judgment against that person.
Reacting to a flood of uncontested debt collection cases, the Maryland high court has just ruled that for all cases filed on or after January 20, 2012, collectors and creditors must produce actual proof that the debtor incurred the debt. It is a national problem that has generated concern among the District Court, the Maryland Commissioner of Financial Regulation and the Office of the Attorney General.
Baltimore’s WBAL Channel 11 news reported on the story stating the new ruling is significant for consumers because the plaintiff often has insufficient reliable documentation and rarely files a notice of intention to defend or appear for trial. Had the debtor challenged the action, he or she would have likely prevailed.
Debt buyers must now present proof that they actually hold the debt through a valid purchase – a common stumbling block for collecting debt buyers.
Attorney Andrew White, who defends clients from debt collectors, told WBAL, “The new ruling represents a judicial distrust of affidavits submitted by debt companies.”
Let’s see if other states make similar rulings in this nationwide issue.