​For release on September 14, 2016   CONTACT:
Yen Dang, Supervising Deputy District Attorney
Consumer Protection Unit
(408) 792-2818   CALIFORNIA PROSECUTORS BRING $10 MILLION CIVIL ACTION AGAINST DEBT COLLECTION GIANT   Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office, joined by three other district attorney’s offices, this week filed a joint $10 million lawsuit on behalf of all Californians against debt collection giant iQor US, Inc. ("iQor") and its wholly owned subsidiary, Allied Interstate, LLC ("Allied").   The civil complaint alleges that employees of iQor and Allied, calling from all over the world, have subjected numerous people to harassing calls for months on end, even when no money was owed.   One San Jose man, for example, received 126 calls in less than a month. He owed no money. A Sunnyvale man was called 88 times in a three-month period until he was forced to block the number through his service. And another San Jose man got numerous calls every day at all three of his homes from a debt-collector with the wrong number and the wrong name.   The suit alleges that the companies violated provisions of California's Rosenthal Act, the federal Telephone Consumer Protection Act, and California's constitutional right to privacy.   The civil complaint also lists violations for calling consumers before 8 a.m. and after 9 p.m., and for attempting to collect debts that had been discharged in bankruptcy. In addition, the defendants are accused of using an automatic dialing system to call cell phone numbers without the consent of the current subscriber -- a practice that is forbidden by the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.   In 2010, Allied settled an action with the Federal Trade Commission for $1.75 million for harassing debtors and attempting to collect from the wrong people. In addition, actions against Allied have been pursued by the Minnesota Attorney General in 2004, the Kern County District Attorney’s Office in 2006, the Arizona Department of Financial Institutions in 2008, the West Virginia Attorney General in 2009, the Maryland State Collection Agency Licensing Board in 2010, the Minnesota Department of Commerce in 2011, the Oregon Attorney General in 2011, the Florida Attorney General in 2011, and the State of Ohio in 2011. Since 2011, hundreds of complaints against Allied have been lodged by California residents with the California Attorney General, the Better Business Bureau, and the Federal Trade Commission.   California consumers who have been victims of unwarranted calls from these companies are asked to call (619) 531-3115.   # # #

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