zeppomarks: (Default)
[personal profile] zeppomarks
This is the nearly identical conversation I just had with TWO of the major credit companies, I am frankly afraid to call the third.

"Hello this is 'insert name here' credit company, how can I help you?"

me - "Good Morning, my mother is recently deceased and we were notified yesterday that an account had been fraudulently opened in her name. I have filed ID Theft case with the Social Security administration and spoken to the State Attorney General's office about how to proceed. They both recommended that in addition to sending the death certificate to the companies involved in trying to collect the debt, that we also send a copy of the death certificate to all three credit companies however it was strongly suggested we send them certified mail - return receipt requested. All I am able to locate for your company is a PO Box, do you happen to have a street address?"

"I am afraid I cannot help you with your mother's account, she will need to call us herself to address any problems or concerns with her credit report."

me - "Well since my mother is playing cards with JESUS right now, I think she is a bit busy to phone.

Date: 2009-03-11 04:03 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] cgoldfish.livejournal.com
I've had to do the same thing over-and-over-and - they never get it.

Date: 2009-03-11 04:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
I can see now this is going to be a long haul. :Þ

Date: 2009-03-11 04:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] emzebel.livejournal.com
Wow. Not really surprised, but...wow.

Date: 2009-03-11 04:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
my favorite part about this is I can pinpoint the second they stopped listening.

Date: 2009-03-11 04:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mystwolf.livejournal.com
Hrmm that seems a bit dense. Ask for a supervisor..
And maybe ask this of CNN's money question.. Bet theyd use it and make these people look DUMB

Date: 2009-03-11 04:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
They both refused to give me an address by the way claiming the Post office can send cert mail to PO Boxes which think is a bald faced lie but we will see...

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From: [identity profile] jah-lila.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 06:14 pm (UTC) - Expand

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From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 08:01 pm (UTC) - Expand

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From: [identity profile] wonderbink.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 07:52 pm (UTC) - Expand

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From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 08:01 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2009-03-11 04:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] coggs.livejournal.com
A similar thing happened to my aunt a week after my grandfather died in regards to the cable bill. She nearly broke down before getting to talk to a supervisor.

You'd think they would just make Death Issues or Bereavement one of the phone option.

Date: 2009-03-11 04:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
Well I have a few months on me with this but still, you would think once they stopped filing their nails to realize what the hell I was talking about I would have gotten a smidgen of cooperation.
Unfortunately I was mistaken, ah well - lost the battle not the war.

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From: [identity profile] coggs.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 04:52 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2009-03-11 04:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] voxsjournal.livejournal.com
Just imagine their reactions if she DID call them, though! And frankly, that's the kind of thing bad customer service deserves. (Banks have the worst call centers in the world, I think.)

Date: 2009-03-11 04:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
I did nurse the idea of calling back with some kind of sound effects on my voice and claim that I was calling from the great beyond.....

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From: [identity profile] dustyskinandall.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 05:01 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2009-03-11 04:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] robby.livejournal.com
I wouldn't waste much time with this. Just mail a letter to the PO box, and expect more phone calls and collection notices, and suggestions that you pay the bill. Collection agencies are the scum of the earth.

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From: [identity profile] dustyskinandall.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 05:02 pm (UTC) - Expand

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From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 08:00 pm (UTC) - Expand

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From: [identity profile] dustyskinandall.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 08:01 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2009-03-11 04:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gallifreyan.livejournal.com
The drones on the phone won't know how to deal with that much detail.

Just say "Hi, I am sending you a letter by certified mail. What is your delivery address for certified mail?"

You'll likely get your answer pretty quickly without confusing a $8/hr drone.

Date: 2009-03-11 04:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
Oh make no mistake, I was calling India - those poor bastards are making 8 dollars a day if they are lucky.
For the record though, neither one of the companies would give me a street address, they insisted that a POBox can get cert mail which I am 75% sure isn't true but I guess we will find out.

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From: [identity profile] gallifreyan.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 05:04 pm (UTC) - Expand

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From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 07:57 pm (UTC) - Expand

Ditto gallifreyan's comment

From: [identity profile] orangecone.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 05:43 pm (UTC) - Expand

Re: Ditto gallifreyan's comment

From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 07:47 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2009-03-11 05:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gallifreyan.livejournal.com
Although it's entirely probable that their certified mail address is a PO box. Equifax's is. And since you're probably not the first, last, or only person to ever send a CRA (not really a credit company) certified mail, they'll likely be able to deal with it just as easily with their caller box service as they would with a street address.

Date: 2009-03-11 04:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] beggargirl.livejournal.com
I've had very similar problems.

I love going into the bank telling them I am the executer of the estate and that I need to talk to someone about her files. They get me to wait and then someone cheerfully comes out to greet me saying "Hello (deceaseds name) right this way!"

Date: 2009-03-11 04:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
so far my favorite question to answer is after I say, hello I am calling about my mother's 'insert situation here' and they say, "Now what is your relationship to the deceased?"

She was was my on-staff Lion Tamer, but I liked to call her "mother" just for fun...

Date: 2009-03-11 05:04 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] circumambulate.livejournal.com
I think you can send cert mail to a PO-box, it'll just work like a package delivery and they'll get a notice in their PO to go pick it up at the desk. How that works with a mondo-corp, and not a person, I have no idea, but I think that's officially Not Your Problem™.

Date: 2009-03-11 07:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
I will give it a try and see if they actually update her profile. Then I will wait for flying monkey's to bring me baskets of silver coins since I feel there will be an equal chance of that. :)

Date: 2009-03-11 05:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] theinnocence.livejournal.com
she wants a diamond ring... FROM THE GRAVE

Date: 2009-03-11 07:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
This is why I freakin adore you.

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From: [identity profile] theinnocence.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 10:03 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2009-03-11 06:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] solfox.livejournal.com
Just send the certificate to the P.O. Box -- even if they had a street address, they probably wouldn't correct their files. An "active" account is an active account is an active account, and they can hardly be troubled to correct LIVE peoples' accounts. =/

If you (or yours) start to get collection calls, however, find out the mailing address of the company attempting to collect and write a terse certified/return receipt letter informing them your mother is deceased (with copy of death certificate), the account was opened fraudulently by an unknown person, and suggest they pursue action with the authorities, but they are no longer to contact you by any means according to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act... and to have a good day. =P If the same companies continue to harass you after thirty days of receipt, you can file a lawsuit. =)

Date: 2009-03-11 07:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
Great minds - I actually already sent the companies requests to validate the receipts and quoted relevant parts of the FDCPA and told them they have 30 days and mentioned casually that if I hear from them again after that time had passed I will be filing a consumer complaint with the State Attorney's General Office which generally scares the bejesus out of debt collectors because it makes them do a boatload of work.


Date: 2009-03-11 07:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jemisoutrageous.livejournal.com
Serenity fucking now indeed.

Date: 2009-03-11 07:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
The company that opened the bad account and the other collections company that bought the debt are from the seventh level of Dante's hell. The law office that sent the note at least had the decency to pretend to be sorry when I said the person they were trying to pry the money out of has shoved off this mortal coil.

Anyway my father is now convinced that I should take up law.
I believe senility has finally taken him...

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From: [identity profile] jemisoutrageous.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 08:01 pm (UTC) - Expand

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From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-11 08:09 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2009-03-11 09:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wonderbink.livejournal.com
I've heard of similar closed loops of idiocy when dealing with trying to close down the AOL accounts of people who have passed away.

One thing you might try--I'm not sure if this will work or not, let me know if it does--is to avoid mentioning your relation to the deceased until they ask.


"Good morning, I need to close this account opened in my mother's name because--"

*DING!* They've stopped listening and are waiting for you to stop talking so they can rattle off the standard response that your mother will have to make the call herself. As you might have noticed.

But if you say:

"Good morning, I need to talk to someone about a fraudulent account that was opened in a dead person's name."

Suddenly, their programming inputs are dealing with the two most important bits of information: 'fraudulent account' and 'dead person'. Your relation to the deceased--as important as it is to you--isn't entirely relevant to this equation, since it can be any number of things (child, spouse, sibling, lawyer) for you to be making the call. If they ask, THEN you tell them. Does that make any sense?

Date: 2009-03-12 08:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
good advice thank you.

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From: [identity profile] gallifreyan.livejournal.com - Date: 2009-03-13 08:56 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2009-03-11 10:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] markmc03.livejournal.com
Since they have a direct line to Hell which they use all the time, they naturally assume even those in Heaven should have, at the very least, a cell phone connection.

Date: 2009-03-12 08:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
You rock sir.

Date: 2009-03-12 01:55 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] nder.livejournal.com
CSR fail.
With the 3rd call, make a fanciful tale involving dragons raping Shiva, and Donny Wahlberg being the actual incarnation of Christ, to hold their attention. then once they ask what it is you want, lay it on them, and see if they're engrossed, for once ;)

Date: 2009-03-12 08:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
I actually didn't bother to call the third one, since the first two finally gave me the information I was looking for which was in a nutshell: go ahead and send it on to the PO Box cause we aint giving you our mailing address due to our evil soulless nature, we are afraid of things in boxes and we would rather Postal employees die horribly.

I will save that story for the attorney's office who has been calling though. :)
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Date: 2009-03-12 08:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
Amen Sister.

Date: 2009-03-12 12:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] antinomic.livejournal.com
I had a similar issue when my mother died. Must be a group who watches the obits. Strange, since my mother had no online life at all. Not even email, ever. So where did they get the info?

In any case, I was pursued by a debt collector to whom I finally said "We are not responsible for any charge after 12/20/05. Since you think we are, we will settle this in court. My mother's address is Arlington National Cemetary, good luck on serving the papers." It was the last call.

Good luck!

Date: 2009-03-12 08:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] zeppo.livejournal.com
Well I know that Death certificates are a matter of public record once somebody dies, and MOST of the time they include a social security number.
Once you have somebody SSN really you can go get just about anything you damn well please if nobody checks the facts very hard.

what the hell is wrong with people?
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