Legal Question in Credit and Debt Law in Massachusetts

A third party debt collection called to tell me to call an attorney.

Called the number, they say I owe $800 and change on a verizon phone account, they have the number which I do not recognize, but can't provide an address associated with it.

They offered a settlement for $400 and change, which even if the debt is mine, I am not financially able to pay currently. There next option is to take me to court.

Is there a law on how long a company has to collect a debt?

I haven't had a home phone since 2005.

And how do I find out if this is even my debt?

They said at some point I agreed to a payment plan and never paid which I have no recall of a conversation or doing so.

Any advice helpful.

Asked on 1/14/17, 3:18 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Jed Berliner L J Berliner

Contract statute of limitations in Mass is six years from the last charge or payment.

Send the attorney a demand pursuant to FDCPA and Mass attorney general regulations for validation of the debt. Send by certified mail, return receipt requested, and keep a copy of your letter.

Separately, Check your credit reports ( to see if this is on it.If so, the credit reporting agency will have instructions on how to request validation of the entry. Credit reports are free:

Good luck.

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Answered on 1/14/17, 11:28 am
David Baker Law Office of David Baker

There are a lot of scam artists out there making up debts and trying to intimidate people into paying non-existent bills. You can do as my colleague Jed advises, or make an appointment with him or me to review the paperwork you got. If you have been sued, do it soon or you may lose the right to defend yourself!

David Baker

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Answered on 1/16/17, 4:15 pm

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