George Simons | July 21, 2022
Summary: If you just received a letter from United Collection Bureau claiming you owe a debt, don't throw it out! You need to respond right away! Sometimes all that's needed is a response to make your old debt disappear!
Have you gotten calls or letters from UCB (United Collection Bureau, Inc.) indicating that they are looking to collect money from you? If you're feeling confused, overwhelmed, or scared by the idea of a debt collector coming after you, you're not alone. Debt collectors often use very persistent, intimidating methods and messages when they are coming after you for debt payment.
You probably have a lot going on in your life, and it may seem easy to ignore calls and letters from UCB in hopes they will just go away and forget about you. But the truth is, they won't, and things will only get worse for you. It's far better to deal with the demands from UCB right away.
Here's what you need to know in order to beat UCB Collection.
UCB is United Collection Bureau, Inc., based in Toledo, Ohio. They are a massive national collection agency that serves as a third-party debt collector for clients in government, healthcare, utilities, financial services, communications, student loan services, and other areas. So, if you owe money to any companies in these fields, chances are they may hand the matter over to UCB to collect that debt from you.
If you're doubting how legitimate of a company they are, we can assure you they are as legitimate as debt collectors come (though that's a very reasonable question to ask). UCB has in fact been accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 2013 and currently has an A+ rating.
However, a good rating with the BBB doesn't mean there aren't complaints about their collecting practices. Anyone can read the reviews on the BBB website to see what other people experienced when UCB came knocking on their door asking for payment.
A good rating also doesn't mean that plenty of people haven't accused UCB of violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, a federal law that regulates what third-party debt collectors can and cannot do when attempting to collect payments. The FDCPA was designed to protect you, so it's in your best interest to get to know what a violation of this law could look like.
So, you've started hearing from UCB, and they are insisting you owe their client money. That's about as fun as a couple of root canals in one day! But the good news is that facing these claims does not have to be as painful as dental procedures.
Educate yourself on the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and what actions by UCB could be violations of this law. Predatory and high-pressure tactics by debt collectors are designed to take advantage of people who are caught off-guard, scared, and uniformed. That's not you! You're prepared to face them head-on, and even turn the legal tables if they have broken the law.
Here are some common ways that many debt collection agencies violate the FDCPA:
While it's easy to just not deal with something as stressful as paying off a debt you cannot afford right now, you can bet it will only get worse if you delay too long. Like a leaky water pipe, it's better to address the problem ASAP than to wait until your whole house is flooded and ruined. Debt that piles up and goes to collections can wreak havoc on your credit score, and lead to so many other headaches down the road.
That's right: Make. Them. Prove. It. Debt collectors like UCB count on fear, inexperience, and desperation in the people they pursue, but you're going to be different because you know that the burden of proof is actually on them. They must show A) You are responsible for the debt, B) They have the right to sue you, and C) That you owe a specific amount.
You may be surprised to learn this, but the truth is that most debt collectors don't have the evidence that would be needed to support their case in court.
You can beat UCB collection in court if you have received a summons. Remember, debt collectors count on people not knowing how to fight back. They count on going to court against you and being completely unopposed. You need to demand evidence and documentation that UCB owns the debt they claim you owe. If they can't prove it, you win! Even if they can, there are still options that are beneficial to you.
But time is of the essence. Don't wait to get help. Prepare a strong Answer to respond to the UCB lawsuit against you.
You'll need to understand a couple of things as you prepare your answer. Most importantly, you must respond within the time limit specified on the summons (usually between 20 and 30 days). Also, you should never admit liability for the debt in writing. Avoiding these big mistakes will set you up with a far better chance of winning the case.
You should also be aware of the statute of limitations on debt in your state. Typically, it's between three and six years. The details of the law vary from state to state, but essentially, if you have not had any activity on the account during the timeframe specified in your state (any payment on the debt can restart the clock), then it's too old for UCB to sue you. However, that defense only works if you do your part and file your Answer.
If you ignore the lawsuit and UCB gets a judgment against you, your situation only gets worse. We can't emphasize this enough: If you want to beat UCB collections in court, don't delay. File an Answer!
SoloSuit makes it easy to respond to a debt collection lawsuit.
How it works: SoloSuit is a step-by-step web-app that asks you all the necessary questions to complete your answer. Upon completion, you can either print the completed forms and mail in the hard copies to the courts or you can pay SoloSuit to file it for you and to have an attorney review the document.
"First time getting sued by a debt collector and I was searching all over YouTube and ran across SoloSuit, so I decided to buy their services with their attorney reviewed documentation which cost extra but it was well worth it! SoloSuit sent the documentation to the parties and to the court which saved me time from having to go to court and in a few weeks the case got dismissed!" – James
Here's a list of guides for other states.
Being sued by a different debt collector? We're making guides on how to beat each one.
Is your credit card company suing you? Learn how you can beat each one.
Need more info on statutes of limitations? Read our 50-state guide.
Need help managing your finances? Check out these resources.