Has Allied Collection Service contacted you, or a collection account from the company appeared on your credit report?
If so, they may be attempting to collect a debt from any number of original creditors.
Whatever you do, never ignore contact or a credit report entry from a collection agency.
Whether the account is legitimate or not, ignoring them will not make them go away.
And, if they decide to get ugly, they can file a lawsuit against you and get a judgment issued by a court.
If that happens, the situation will escalate. They may be able to garnish your wages or even your bank account until the debt is fully paid.
The best strategy to deal with Allied Collection Service, or any other collection agency, is early intervention.
That doesn’t mean rolling over, paying the debt, and admitting defeat just to make it go away.
About Allied Collection Service
Based in Columbus, Indiana, Allied Collection Service, Inc. was founded in 1970, and describes itself as providing services at all levels of the collection process.
That includes accounts receivable management for their clients, as well as full-service debt collection.
They specialize in the recovery of medical debt, higher education, municipalities, retail, and commercial debt.
That means you could hear from Allied Collection Service for just about any debt you’ve ever had.
The wide variety of clients also means Allied Collection Service may be collecting on debts large and small.
For example, higher education and medical debts can easily run into many thousands of dollars, while retail accounts may be just a few hundred dollars.
Is Allied Collection Service Legit?
Allied Collection Service is a legitimate company that has a Better Business Bureau rating of “A+”, the highest rating on a scale running from A+ to F.
Not only is the company accredited by the BBB, but they also had only three complaints filed against them in the past three years.
That’s incredibly low for a collection agency.
If you are overwhelmed by dealing with negative entries on your credit report,
we suggest you ask a professional credit repair company for help.
How to Deal with Allied Collection Service
There are some basic rules you’ll need to be aware of before working with any collection agency.
Using them throughout the process will both improve the chance of a successful outcome, as well as minimize unintended negative consequences.
1. Don’t deal with Allied Collection Service by phone
This is the worst possible communication method in dealing with collection agencies.
That’s because phone contact gives the collection agency every advantage possible.
They can contact you all hours of the day and night—both at home and even at work—and also use intimidating and even threatening language to force you to pay up.
That’s why phone contact needs to be avoided.
Though your initial contact with the company may be by phone, insist that all future contact be handled in writing instead.
That will eliminate both phone calls and threats.
If you’re not convinced that maintaining phone contact with the collection agency is a bad idea, you should know that they routinely record phone conversations.
This is done so the collection agency will have recorded evidence of any information you provide that will further connect you with the debt, or that you have made a promise to make a payment, but it never arrived.
And, if that happens, the collection agency will have evidence against you in a lawsuit.
2. Deal with Allied Collection Service in writing
It’s your right under federal law to insist all communication with the collection agency be handled through written correspondence.
You should take full advantage of that right as early in the process as possible.
Written correspondence will give you greater control over the entire process of dealing with Allied Collection Service.
You’ll be able to limit your own comments more easily in a letter than you can in a phone conversation.
At the same time, you’ll be limiting how much the agency will be able to say to you.
In all communications with the company, your goal should be twofold: to get as much information from the company as possible while giving as little information to them as you’re able.
Written correspondence will also give you an all-important paper trail in dealing with Allied Collection Service.
It’ll make it easier for you to understand what they are offering, and also to identify any abuses that may lead to the invalidation of their debt claim under federal law.
In addition, a written record of all exchanges may offer a valid defense against a lawsuit if the company undertakes one against you.
In sending any correspondence to the company, be sure you do it by certified mail, return receipt requested.
This will not only prove you sent the letters that you did, but also that the company received them.
3. Never promise to make a payment
One of the reasons why collection agencies love communicating with you by phone is because it offers them an opportunity to get you to promise to send money.
That’s not even hard for a skilled collection agent to do.
And, if they’re successful in getting you to make that promise—or even to hint that you might—and you fail to send the funds, that broken promise can be used against you in a lawsuit.
That’s why it’s vitally important you never make a promise to send a payment to a collection agency unless you are both willing and able to follow through.
Avoiding those promises is, of course, easier to do when communication is handled in writing only. Be sure none of your communications includes an outright promise, or even an implication, that you plan to send money.
4. Familiarize yourself with your rights
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) provides consumers with certain protections from collection agency abuses.
You can learn these protections by reading the Debt Collection FAQs provided by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).
Just knowing your rights under federal law may give you the upper hand when a collection agency starts getting ugly.
Get Help From a Professional
If after reading the strategies in this article, you don’t feel you’re ready to deal with a collection agency, we recommend you work with a good credit repair company.
That will not only save you time and stress, but it will also give you a greater likelihood of a positive outcome.
But, if Allied Collection Service threatens you with legal action, you may need to hire a credit attorney.
Lexington Law specializes in credit law and may keep the case from ever making it to court.
Specific Strategies for Allied Collection Service
Now that you’re familiar with the four basic rules for dealing with collection agencies, let’s outline strategies you can use to deal with Allied Collection Service more specifically.
Under federal law, a collection agency is required to provide you with verification of a debt they claim you owe.
You have a right to request that they provide complete information.
This can be done by requesting that Allied Collection Service provides you with a complete debt validation letter.
The letter must provide complete information on the debt, including the name of the original creditor, the date the account went into collection, the amount of the debt, and information that clearly connects you to the obligation.
If the collection agency is unable to provide this letter, or if it comes back missing important information, you’ll be able to challenge the validity of the debt, and even have it deleted.
If Allied Collection Service provides you with a fully complete debt validation letter, or you readily acknowledge your obligation for the debt, you may be able to erase the collection account from your credit report through what’s known as a goodwill deletion.
That’s where you request the collection agency delete the account from your credit reports, and they do so as an act of goodwill.
As you’re probably already guessing, it’s not quite that simple. You’ll need to send Allied Collection Service a goodwill letter requesting the deletion.
But, in order for that request to have any chance of happening, the debt will have to be fully paid, and you’ll need to have a valid explanation that the debt went into collection due to circumstances beyond your control.
For example, if the collection account occurred because you were out of work for over a year, or you experienced a divorce or major medical event, the collection agency may sympathize and delete the account from your credit report.
It will help your case if you can send documentation supporting your claim of extenuating circumstances.
There’s no guarantee the collection agency will delete the collection account from your credit report.
But if you have a good explanation for the debt and it’s already been fully paid, a goodwill deletion may be worth pursuing.
This is a strategy you should consider when you have the funds to completely pay off the debt.
The basic strategy is that you:
- offer to pay the collection agency the full amount they claim you owe
- in exchange for the removal of the collection account from your credit reports
You can do this through a pay-for-delete letter. Collection agencies will sometimes cooperate with these requests.
That is because it provides them with an opportunity to collect the full balance owed on the debt.
That said, you should be aware that the outcome of this request is speculative at best.
Even if Allied Collection Service agrees to the arrangement in writing, they can still accept your full payment and not delete the account from your credit report.
If that happens, you have no legal recourse. A pay-for-delete is not a legally enforceable arrangement, even if the collection agency agrees to it.
The best chance you’ll have to remove Allied Collection Service from your life is if they fall short on the debt validation letter.
That means either they don’t provide it, or it comes back incomplete. Under federal law, a debt that is not fully validated is required to be deleted.
That doesn’t necessarily mean the collection agency will agree.
But, even if they don’t, you’ll be able to dispute the claim directly with the three credit bureaus based on the lack of complete information.
You can open up a dispute with the three credit bureaus,—Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion.
They’ll be required to investigate the matter within 30 days.
If Allied Collection Service fails to validate the debt, the credit bureaus will remove the information from your credit reports.
Settle the Debt
If you know you owe the debt, you may still be able to pay less than the full amount by negotiating a settlement.
This is very common in the collections industry, and quite possibly the primary way most collection accounts are settled.
You’ll send a letter proposing to pay less than the full amount of the debt in full satisfaction of the obligation.
We recommend offering to pay no more than 50% of the amount owed.
But, if they counteroffer with an amount closer to the full debt, you’ll already be on the right path.
You should come back with another offer just a little bit higher than your original one.
This will likely result in a series of back-and-forth negotiations until an agreement is reached on a satisfactory amount.
Once that happens, insist Allied Collection Service furnishes you with a letter confirming all the details of the agreement.
This will include that they are:
- accepting the agreed-upon amount in full satisfaction of the entire balance
- they would halt further collection activities
- report the account as fully satisfied with all three major credit bureaus
You should not send any money until you receive this letter, and it confirms all the details of your agreement.
If you send money before receiving the letter, they may accept payment but continue to pursue you for the full debt.