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How to beat CBE Group

Dena Standley | March 20, 2024

Dena Standley
Legal Expert, Paralegal
Dena Standley, BA

Dena Standley is a seasoned paralegal with more than 20 years of experience in legal research and writing, having received a certification as a Legal Assistant/Paralegal from Southern Technical College.

Edited by Hannah Locklear

Hannah Locklear
Editor at SoloSuit
Hannah Locklear, BA

Hannah Locklear is SoloSuit’s Marketing and Impact Manager. With an educational background in Linguistics, Spanish, and International Development from Brigham Young University, Hannah has also worked as a legal support specialist for several years.

Summary: When contacted by CBE Group about a debt, ask them to validate it. If it's a legit debt, CBE group might sue. You should respond to the lawsuit and negotiate a settlement out of court, and can help you with both these steps and more.

When debt collectors like CBE Group come calling, it can be tempting to bury your head in the sand and avoid facing them. However, if you've been sued for debt, ignoring the case is the worst option you have. Doing so can lead to a judgment against you that give collectors the right to garnish your wages and seize your property.

Don't ignore CBE Group. Instead, use SoloSuit to respond and resolve your debt. Keep reading to learn more.

What is CBE Group?

CBE Group is a debt collection agency that has been around since 1933. The company serves hundreds of creditors, from cell phone providers to the federal government. CBE has a lucrative contract for the collection of U.S. Department of Education student loans.

CBE Group, Inc. is located in Cedar Falls, Iowa, and employs over 1,300 individuals. The company conducts first and third-party collections. However, a long history in the industry and a large footprint does not mean CBE always plays by the rules.

CBE Group reviews are not good

There are more than 400 complaints listed under CBE Group's profile with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) To CBE Group's credit, they have instituted a policy of responding to complaints lodged with the BBB, and most of those seem to be resolved in the client's favor. However, many of these complaints arose because false or invalid debts wrought havoc on these consumers' credit reports.

From more than 600 Google reviews, CBE Group an average star rating of 1.2 out of 5 stars. Most of these reviews mention scammy behavior and harassment when communicationg with CBE Group. Let's take a look at a real CBE Group review (edited for clarity):

"CBE Group will harass people even if they have the wrong number. No one should you ever give information to a 800 number that just says this is a recorded line or asks if you know the person they are calling for when no one introduced who they are!"

Is CBE Group, Inc. a scam?

CBE Group, Inc. is legitimate, though consumers should always take care to validate that they are dealing with a legitimate collection agency and not an impersonator. With over $93 million in annual revenue, CBE Group is one of the country's largest and most profitable debt collection agencies.

According to the BBB, CBE was incorporated in 1985 and accredited by the BBB since 1992.

What to do when contacted by CBE Group

It is disconcerting to be contacted by a debt collection agency, and it can be hard to determine if they are legitimate. While CBE is a real collection agency, you can never be too careful. Make sure you do not provide any detailed personal information or information about the debt. They should already have that information before they contact you.

Terminate the call and contact the company directly. They can be reached at:

CBE Group
1309 Technology Parkway
Cedar Falls, IA 50613

(800) 925-6686

Once you have verified that you are speaking to CBE, you have several options. If you have paid the debt or you are making timely payments, you can request a goodwill deletion. It is up to the debt collection agency to determine if they will remove the item from your credit report out of goodwill. Craft a concise, clear letter outlining what you are asking for and why. Elaborate on how the debt ended up in collections and your steps to correct the problem.

If it is your first contact with CBE Group, or you are unsure of the debt, send a Debt Validation Letter. Solosuit can simplify the process, and sending the letter asserts and protects your rights under the FDCPA.

If there is an error in the debt, or the debt has reached the statute of limitations (which varies by state), you can dispute the debt collection. Sending a credit dispute letter to the three credit reporting agencies will initiate an investigation into the debt. If the debt cannot be verified, it will be deleted from your credit file. Your right to send a dispute is covered under Section 609 of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA). As a result, these dispute letters are often referred to as 609 letters.

Know your rights when dealing with CBE Group

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) gives consumers legal rights and limits abusive or harassment actions from debt collection agencies. Consumers should understand their rights under the FCRA and have a solid understanding of what a debt collection agency can and cannot do.

Under the FDCPA, companies cannot:

  • Use profanity
  • Make threats of arrest
  • Harrass you through repetitive calls
  • Lie about any information
  • Withold information about the original creditor
  • Call you before 8am or after 9pm
  • Discuss your debts with anyone other than you, your spouse, and your attorney
  • Call you at work when your employer prohibits such communications in the workplace

If CBE Group, Inc., behaves in a threatening, abusive, or harassing manner, file a report immediately with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

In November 2021, the CFPB passed a new Debt Collection Rule that limits how often a debt collector can contact you by phone. A debt collector is presumed to be in violation of that rule if they contact you more than 7 times in a 7 day period or contact you by phone within 7 days of speaking to you about a debt.

How to get CBE Group off your back

The first step to getting CBE Group to leave you alone is sending a Debt Validation Letter to ensure that the debt and the associated information are accurate and actually belong to you. When CBE Group receives a Debt Validation Letter, they must provide the following information or cease all contact:

  1. The amount of the debt.
  2. The name of the creditor.
  3. The collector will assume the debt is valid unless the consumer sends them a Debt Validation Letter within 30 days.
  4. If you send the collector a Debt Validation Letter they will need to mail you validation of the debt.
  5. If you send them a Debt Validation Letter they will need to mail you the name and address of the original creditor.

If CBE fails to respond to the request for debt validation, then you can request that the information be removed from your credit report. You can do the same if the information they provide has inaccuracies, which is quite common by the time a debt leaves the hands of the original creditor.

Follow the advice above if CBE Group violates the FCRA or the FDCPA. Keep detailed notes of any phone calls and interactions you receive from CBE Group, and file a complaint if your rights are violated. To learn more about how to make a Debt Validation Letter, check out the video below:

Can CBE Group garnish wages>

Yes, CBE Group can garnish your wages if the collection agency has filed a lawsuit and obtained a judgment against you. A judgment grants creditors and debt collectors the rights to collect money owed with aggressive methods like wage garnishment, freezing your bank account, and putting liens on your property.

To prevent a judgment, file an Answer into your case and defend yourealf in court.

How to beat CBE Group if they file a lawsuit against me

If you are served with a Summons or a Complaint notifying you of a lawsuit by CBE Group, do nott ignore it and hope it will go away. When this happens, debt collectors often win a case by default, resulting in garnished wages or liens placed against your property.

The first step to beating CBE Group in court is to draft and file a written Answer to the Summons and Complaint. Here are six tips for drafting a winning Answer:

  1. The Answer isn't the place to tell your side of the story in detail: At this stage in the lawsuit, the burden of proof is not on you. This means that you don't have to elaborately explain your side of the story. In fact, doing so can actually hurt your case. Let the plaintiff (in this case, CBE Group) prove their claims. All you have to do is respond to each claim listed in the Complaint.

  2. Deny Deny Deny: Most attorneys recommend that you deny as many of the claims against you as possible. Denying is kind of like saying, “prove it,” which requires more work and documentation on CBE Group's end. If CBE Group doesn't have enough evidence to prove you owe the debt, it will likely dismiss the case altogether.

  3. Include defenses: You should include a section in your Answer where you state your affirmative defenses. These are short statements that are reasons CBE Group doesn't have a case against you. For example, the debt may be past the statute of limitations, you may be sued in the wrong state or county, and you may not have received a Summons notifying you of the lawsuit. These are all common affirmative defenses that can strengthen your case.

  4. Use standard formatting or “style”: Your Answer should be clean and professional, with standard font, font size, and formatting. It should include a caption that states the court information, parties, and case number.

  5. Include certificate of service: The certificate of service is a short statement at the end of a legal document that certifies the document was actually sent to the opposing party. It should include the address that was used and the manner in which it was sent. So, you should certify that you sent the Answer to the attorney representing CBE Group with the address listed on the Summons document.

  6. Sign it: Almost all courts require a signature at the end of the Answer. Without an Answer, the court will most likely reject the document. Make sure to double check whether your court accepts electronic signatures or not.

To learn more about these 6 tips, check out this video:

It is frightening to be sued for a debt, and it can also be expensive to hire an attorney to defend you against claims made by a debt collector. SoloSuit is here to help you fight and win against debt collectors like CBE Group. Our software asks you questions about your debt then puts you in the driver's seat in deciding the right course of action. Debt collectors are far too accustomed to consumers who don't fight back. At SoloSuit, we want to empower consumers to tackle unfair debt collection practices and win against unjust debts.

If you have been contacted by CBE Group, contact SoloSuit to learn about your options. You can fight back, and you can win against CBE Group and other debt collectors.

What is SoloSuit?

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.

Respond with SoloSuit

"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

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