I’ve been getting calls from Encore Receivable Management Inc., which I take to be some sort of collection agency. If I pick up the phone and get a live person, he or she asks for [insert name]. Different name each time. I tell them they have the wrong number, that no one by that name lives here, and the I’ve never heard of the person. I’ve reported them thrice to the National Do-Not-Call Registry. They say that since they’re not solicitors that won’t do any good. Once again I’ve told them they have the wrong number and that they’re annoying me.
In theory you might have a claim under the Fair Credit Reporting Act. The problem is that most collection agencies are fly-by-night operations and difficult to pursue that sort of claim against.
What I’ve done with success is (1) don’t try to accomplish anything with the person who calls you – they are just paid harassers and don’t believe a thing you say; (2) call the collection agency during the week, explain the problem, and ask to be removed from their database; (3) repeat a few times. I did this, and eventually I got a helpful person who took my number out of the database. No more calls.
If no negative information is being reported to the credit agencies, there can be no claim. I would send a modified version of a cease and desist letter claiming harrassment, send it CRRR. Tell them that your phone number is being used in attempts to make contact with people you do not know and that you will contact the state attorney general’s office and file a complaint if they do not quit calling. Give them a reasonable amount of time to comprehend the letter then take action. I had a similar situation a few years ago with a collection agency trying to get ahold of a brother I have not had contact with in over 15 years. The C&D letter worked, I never heard from them again.
Not to sound paranoid, but is it worth checking out your credit report, just in case? In the worst case, somebody else could be running up bad debt using your address or phone number, but different names.