Tuesday, April 24, 2012

DCS Collector Carrie Hayes: Incompetent and Rude!

A business found its PO box flooded with correspondence from DCS for an individual they'd never heard of.

They marked the letters "no such person here" and they kept coming.

They gave one to the Post Office, and explained the problem. The letters kept coming.

So, they opened one of the letters and called Carrie Hayes.

Carrie Hayes was insulting. She said they should not have opened the letter. She criticized the Post Office for not doing a better job. She demanded that the business forward the letters back to her. They refused.

The letter is something of a piece of work. They "must talk"-this is a standard collector trick. Collectors are often rude and threatening on the phone, they do this to intimidate people into paying debts they do not owe.

Then it seems someone at DCS is a Star Trek fan. "Intelligently evaluate" indeed-haven't they heard of a split infinitive? Even if they're granted this grammatical lapse, there's nothing intelligent about DCS. They are an abusive collection agency taking advantage of the government's willingness to allow private collections.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Tom DeLay - DCS Connection

November 24, 2010: Tom Delay of Sugar Land, Texas, the former House Republican Majority Leader and TX-22 congressman during the beginning of the Bush & Cheney administration, was convicted today, 11/24, in Austin, of money laundering and conspiracy to commit money laundering, to local Texas candidates in 2002.

Delay, who's currently known for his last bout on the TV show "Dancing with the Stars," had resigned from the seat in 2005 after being charged by a Texas court.

Delay's wife Christine worked for convicted felon lobbyist Jack Abramoff, along with Julie Doolittle, the wife of John Doolittle, the former representative of CA 04. Two of Delay's former staffers, Tony Rudy and Michael Scanlon, who went on to "other occupations," were also convicted in the Abramoff scandal in 2005 and 2006. Besides having his ex staffer and Abramoff paying Christine a monthly salary from "Alexander Strategy Group" between 1998 and 2002, Delay took trips to the Commonwealth of the Marianas Islands and golfing trips to Scotland and attended sporting events for free because of his association with Abramoff's lobbying firms.

Delay was not charged in the Abramoff scandal. Recently, on Nov 15, 2010, the former lobbyist for the city of Lincoln, CA, Kevin Ring, an ex staffer of former Congressman John Doolittle, was convicted in Federal court the Abramoff scandal on charges of conspiring to corrupt, paying a gratuity, and 3 counts of honest services wire fraud. Doolittle was named as an unindicted co conspirator in the trial's documents, along with his spouse. Doolittle has not been charged by the DOJ in the Abramoff case.

In today's Texas conviction, prosecutors said Delay and 2 co conspirators, John Colyandro and Jim Ellis, used Delay's PAC, "Texans for a Republican Majority," to illegally give $190,000 in corporate donations to candidates in the state Texas legislature, by first sending the corporate money through the RNC. The RNC, which had been provided with a handy list of 7 people who just happened to be running for office and how much money they could use, when Jim Ellis dropped that check off, then gave the money to the Texas House candidates. Which is not legal in that state. Six of the recipients of the T.R.M. pac cash from Delay won, and went on to push through a state redistricting plan.

Ellis and Colyandro have not yet gone to trial in the case. Delay's attorney says he is disappointed, and plans to appeal.

Back on Sept 21 2004, when John Colyandro, Jim Ellis, and Warren Robold were indicted, a California company was also charged, named "Diversified Collection Services Inc" of San Leandro. They were debt collectors for student loans in default. They were also a subsidiary part of "Performant Corporation." They in turn were supported by the private equity firm "Parthenon Capital." Parthenon Capital, in turn, also invests in "Wildlands, Inc" which is the local company that does "mitigation banking," or that land swap routine where developers who want to develop or change zoning one piece of property with wildlife habitat, such as a wetlands, but can't, have to buy and set aside another piece of habitat with the like amount of similar habitat.

You may have seen those little signs once in a while, on a fence of a set aside property, saying "owned by" Wildlands. Especially in Placer County, which is not only the easternmost habit for the arch enemy of developers and some infamous local politicians, the VERNAL POOL FAIRY SHRIMP, but which has a lot of those seasonal vernal pools - alkaline grassland depressions, which fill with rainwater in the spring for the shrimp, before drying up each May - and a highway project that was curiously designed to go right through the heart of them, instead of merely widening another parallel road.

For the past 4 years, every time I've seen one of those signs, I'd think of two things - one local, infamous Republican politician literally yelling about the FAIRY SHRIMP and the ENVIRONMENTAL TERRORISTS ruining everything ! , that dying downtown in Lincoln, the traffic jams and bypass road that wasn't going anywhere, and wondering how Tom Delay somehow fit into all of this. Even the Western Placer Schools District has one of these conservation banks to set aside land. Developers hot on getting a project approved, or somebody wanting to sell some undeveloped pasture, could be very... generous.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Class Action Lawsuit Over Garnishment Notices

Performant, the parent company of Diversified Collection Services, has been named in a class action lawsuit.

One of the issues is vague threats of "administrative garnishment" that intimidate many people into paying money they do not owe.

As has been reported before, the head of compliance, Dennis Christie, is a committed neocon, so he's probably angling for a bailout.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

DCS Compliance Department: Run by a NEOCON

If you complain to Diversified Collection Services (DCS) enough, you'll get a letter from Dennis Christie, the head of their regulatory compliance department. He's a supporter of the Freedom Project:

Christie, Dennis (Diversified Collection Services Inc), (Zip code: 94513) $600 to FREEDOM PROJECT; THE on 05/26/04

The Freedom Project seeks to make sure neocon Republican candidates are nominated and elected.

Isn't it interesting the DCS is in such trouble with its state and federal collection contracts?

Contact your congressman or congresswoman, and demand that DCS' contract in your state be terminated IMMEDIATELY! 8 years of the neocons was enough! DCS will probably ask for a bailout!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

The Beginning of the End of DCS?

So much for privatizing the federal government.

The Internal Revenue Service's decision this week to quit using debt collectors to dun delinquent taxpayers was celebrated by public employee unions as a pendulum shift after watching the Bush administration often opt for private contractors over federal workers to deliver government services.

The IRS program was a small one, bringing in a little more than $80 million since its inception in 2006. But it represented an ideological toehold for conservatives who believe that private companies are more efficient than government agencies.

It was an ideology embraced by former President George W. Bush, who famously — and unsuccessfully — toyed with the idea of partially privatizing Social Security.

Privatization won't disappear. It's too widespread in a federal government that relies on private contractors for work as diverse as computer programming and providing security in Iraq. But with a new Democratic administration in charge, experts don't expect to hear much about privatizing government functions from President Barack Obama.

"I think we're going to see a reversal of privatization," said Harvey B. Feigenbaum, a political science professor at George Washington University. "When contracts come up for renewal, they will see if it would be better for the public sector to do the work."

IRS contracts with private debt collection agencies to go after delinquent taxpayers expired Friday. In deciding not to renew them, IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman said he concluded after a monthlong review that tax collection could best be done by government workers.

The agency had been turning over to private debt collectors some delinquency cases, often in the $5,000 to $10,000 range, that the IRS lacked the manpower to pursue. The program cost about $7.6 million a year to administer, and private contractors, such as the controversial Diversified Collection Services (DCS) of Livermore, CA, were allowed to keep about a quarter of the taxes they collected.

The program brought in more money than it cost to operate, but it had become a political headache for the IRS. The union representing IRS workers and the National Taxpayer Advocate, an independent ombudsman within the agency, opposed the program, as did some Democrats in Congress. Other powerful lawmakers from both political parties supported it.

Colleen M. Kelley, president of the National Treasury Employees Union, said the decision to end the program "reaffirms" that "no one can perform the work of the federal government better than federal employees."

Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa, the senior Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, disagreed. He said the IRS used flawed methods to review the program and succumbed to public employee unions and their allies.

"It seems the IRS and Treasury Department went out of their way to knock out an emerging, effective and evenhanded way to collect tax debt that the IRS will otherwise never collect," Grassley said. "It's discouraging when commonsense efforts to make things fair for honest taxpayers in a way that's decent and logical all around get beat down by vested, powerful interests in Washington."

Paul Light, a professor of public service at New York University, said he expects the Obama administration to de-emphasize the use of private contractors for government work. But, he said, that probably means hiring more government workers, which comes with the political baggage of enlarging the federal government.

"If you aren't going to contract out services, how are you going to provide them?" Light asked. "I'm fairly certain there will be an increase in the number of federal government workers."

At the IRS, Schulman said he expects to hire more than 1,000 workers this year to increase collections. He encouraged workers from private collection agencies to apply.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Night of the Evil Dead

They must hire zombies at Diversified Collection Services.

As we've reported here, DCS collects for various government agencies.

Someone made a compromise with a state that uses DCS to do its collections. The state doesn't expect any more money, but DCS does!

DCS' position is that nothing has changed! They want the full amount!

This is almost certainly going to end up in court. It is just another case to show why private collection agencies are NOT a good choice for public debt collections.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

What happened to DCS in 2005?

This-it seems they never learn...


A class action lawsuit has been filed in the Southern District Court of Indiana against Diversified Collections Services, Inc. for violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) which prohibits debt collectors from engaging in abusive, deceptive and unfair collection practices. Class members seek statutory damages, reasonable attorney’s fees and costs of the litigation.

Specifically, the complaint alleges that Diversified Collection Services, Inc. attempted to collect a debt from the plaintiff that was owed to the US Department of Education. The letters failed to provide her with notice that she had 30 days to challenge the validity of the debt and seek verification of it, which she alleges is in violation of the FDCPA.