If you’ve been diligent in paying down your debts, you probably don’t have to worry about debt collectors. If you miss a payment, however, you might get an alarming notice that you owe money to a company you don’t recognize. Don’t panic. Your creditor has likely sold your account to someone else, for example, LVNV Funding, LLC.
LVNV Funding buys charged-off accounts from lenders like credit card companies and personal loan issuers.
What is LVNV Funding LLC?
LVNV Funding, LLC buys debt accounts from companies.
Charged-off debts are one of the worst things that can happen to your credit score. Charge-offs are posted when a creditor has given up hope that you will pay off the debt and instead has closed your account. However, you are still responsible for repaying the debt. Companies like LVNV Funding purchase these debts, then outsources collection of these debts in an attempt to recoup some of the money.
Sometimes it’s credit card debt, sometimes student loan debt, or it can be any other creditor you may owe. Therefore, even though your original account may have been with Creditor Whoosiwhatsit, it will now be listed as LVNV Funding, LLC on your credit report, and they’re the ones calling you and sending you bills demanding payment on your balance. It’s not a scam.
READ MORE: What is a charge-off?
Why is LVNV Funding LLC on my Credit Report?
They are on your account because they now own your debt. This is frustrating because your original creditor is also still listed on your credit report. Now, however, your original creditor lists your amount due as “$0” because of a “charge-off.”
Unfortunately, this leads to a lot of anger and confusion when borrowers get a collection notice from a lender they don’t recognize or see a strange loan on their credit report. It leads to plenty of negative reviews through the Better Business Bureau, including this one:
“LVNV Funding LLC seems like a scam, I have no idea about what they are referring to a collection through my banking institution. My banking institution have not alerted me of such a collection or withdrawing of money. Be careful and do not provide any of the information that they are requesting without consulting with your banking institution.“
Resurgent Capital Services LP also has more than its fair share of BBB complaints. Here’s an example:
“In April, Resurgent Capital Services/LVNV sent me a letter about a credit claim for a purchase from ***. I immediately wrote back stating I DID NOT make this purchase and have NEVER purchased anything from ***. A few days later, a second Resurgent letter indicated a person with the same name as me purchased an Apple Watch in CALIFORNIA in 2015. I do not live in California and NEVER have. The address for the California purchaser is clearly identified in Resurgent’s documentation and I don’t know anyone in that city. This is CLEARLY not a charge I made or owe. The third letter stated that I need to submit a police report, notarized identity theft affidavit, letter from the creditor or court document showing the person was prosecuted. There are no such documents. Resurgent is clearly phishing for someone to pay this bill that is not mine. They only could’ve gotten my name/address from Google or similar. I have contacted my attorney. There are many legal cases vs. Resurgent/LVNV online.“
How Does LVNV Funding LLC Work?
From their website: “You still owe your debt, but the new owner is LVNV Funding. LVNV Funding outsources the management of its portfolio of accounts to a company called Resurgent Capital Services.”
Resurgent Capital Services is a licensed third-party debt collector based in Greenville, S.C., specializing in managing these types of consumer assets. Resurgent says, “financial peace of mind is just a few clicks away.” But getting a debt collection letter from an unfamiliar company isn’t exactly reassuring. Resurgent may contact you directly or may ask one of their collection agency partners to help them reach out to you.
LVNV is a debt buyer. The company buys your debt from your original lender. They hire a debt collection agency (Resurgent, in this case) to do all the work of getting you to pay the debt. That debt collection company employs the people who are calling you, sending you mail, etc.
How Do You Remove LVNV Funding LLC From Your Credit Reports?
First, you must ensure that the debt LVNV Funding claims you owe you is legitimate. The best way to do this is to send a written notice to the company stating that you:
- Challenge the debt
- Demand proof that LVNV Funding has the legal standing to demand payment from you
Both LVNV Funding and Resurgent have the same contact information. You can reach them at:
55 Beattie Pl Ste. 110
Greenville, SC 29601-5115
Phone number: (864) 248-8700
Before doing this, research your rights from the Federal Trade Commission’s Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). This site will also provide you with tips on how to notify the company of your dispute, etc. The FTC also has a great debt validation letter template for disputing information with the creditor.
READ MORE: Credit score in the dumps? Here are the best credit repair companies to work with.
If the Debt is Legitimate
A few options are available to you if it turns out that the debt LVNV is trying to collect is legit.
Pay it Off
This is the best, simplest, and most straightforward. If you can afford to pay the debt in full, do so. If you can’t, ask the company to help you put together a payment plan that you can afford.
Pay for Delete
Pay for delete is an agreement you make with your debtor that states if you pay X dollars, LVNV Funding will delete the account from your credit reports.
This practice is frowned upon by the credit bureaus because it makes their promise of accuracy questionable. And, of course, missed payments to the original creditor are not subject to a “pay for delete” agreement with whoever buys your debt.
Furthermore, with new scoring algorithms, like VantageScore 3.0 and FICO 9, the pay-for-delete option is quickly becoming obsolete.
Credit counseling is when you work with an agency or a non-profit group to negotiate down or even settle your debts and manage your payments for you. They do this by allowing you to make a single payment to their agency which they, in turn, distribute to your creditors and lenders. Many will offer a free consultation.
Debt settlement requires making an offer to the creditor for a fixed amount of money to to consider the debt repaid. Once a deal is reached, a lump-sum payment is made. This course of action can seriously damage your credit score and damage your credit report. And, of course, make sure you thoroughly research any company offering to help with debt settlements. Not all these companies are on the up and up!
If the Debt isn’t Legitimate
Dispute it. You will have to do this with each credit reporting bureau individually. Each of the three bureaus will have specific instructions for disputing the debts listed on your report. Make sure you follow them! It’s important to regularly monitor your credit reports for inaccurate information.
Instructions for disputing information
P.O. Box 4500
Allen, Texas 75013
Phone number: 866-200-6020
How disputes work with Equifax
Start your dispute with Equifax online
P.O. Box 740241
Atlanta, Ga. 30374
Phone number: 866-349-5191
Transunion dispute information
Transunion dispute information
Transunion Customer Solutions
P.O. Box 2000
Chester, Pa. 19016-2000
Phone number: (833)-395-6941
How to Beat LVNV Funding LLC in Court
Disclosure: This section is not to be confused with legal advice. If you feel that you need an attorney, please contact one. This section is for informative purposes only.
If, for some reason, you must face LVNV Funding in court, make sure you follow these tips:
Consult an Attorney
If you’re afraid that you won’t be able to afford an attorney’s fee, don’t panic! Your state’s Bar Association can hook you up with an attorney who can take a quick look at your case and give you some advice for a minimal fee. You can also check out Legal Aid and any county-run legal clinics in your area. Make sure to ask about your state’s statute of limitations.
Get a Copy of Your Credit Report
Make sure you have an up-to-date copy of your credit report and have it on hand when you go to court.
Force Them to Prove Their Case
Remember: they need to be able to provide documentation proving that they own your debt to the court. If they can’t provide that documentation (or you can prove their documentation is fake), you can request that the case be judged in your favor or tossed out.
Pro tip: Do not try to call them yourself if you get a court notice from LVNV Funding. While it will be tempting to try to make the problem go away, it could make things worse. Talk to an attorney, and make sure that you appear on your designated court date.
Check Your Credit Reports
Here’s the good news: You’re entitled to know what’s in your credit report or why you were denied credit, thanks to the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA.)
Each of the credit bureaus allows you to check your credit report for free once a year. You can do these checks via annualcreditreport.com.
You can also monitor your credit via apps and sites like Credit Karma.
Your bank will likely also have a tool you can use to keep track of your credit.
At a minimum, you should be checking your credit once per year for your own informational purposes and flagging any information you don’t recognize or know is false.
Make sure to keep an eye out for signs of negative items, identity theft or any other suspicious activity and report anything you find on your report to the FTC, CFPB and your state attorney general’s office.
The Bottom Line
Many people are confused when they see LVNV Funding listed on their credit reports. But it could very well be a debt that you still owe. If you notice anything that looks unfamiliar, contact that creditor and request a debt validation letter. Once you’ve confirmed whether the debt is legitimate, there are steps you can take to protect yourself and address the problem.
Not directly, wage garnishment cannot happen without a court order giving the company explicit permission to do so. However, if LVNV Funding takes you to court and you fail to appear, a judge could order wage garnishment.
Conveniently, LVNV Funding hires a company called Resurgent to do all its collections work for them and the only contact information available is for this company, which you can find here.
Do not try to do this on your own. Hire an attorney to help you and follow the advice they give you.
Technically, it is Resurgent that does the collecting. LVNV Funding LLC, however, will probably buy debt from anybody willing to sell accounts to them.