Washington State Department of Financial Institutions

Consumer Alert:
PCS: Pacifica Credit Services

Possible Payday Loan Collection Scheme

May 02, 2012

The Washington State Department of Financial Institutions (DFI) received a report that an individual contacted a Washington consumer via telephone stating that the caller was from PCS. The caller indicated that PCS was attempting to collect on a debt for an outstanding payday loan that the consumer obtained from Advance America. The caller advised the consumer that the debt was to be paid via a prepaid debit card. The consumer did not have an outstanding payday loan from Advance America or any other company. It was also reported that the caller called the consumer’s place of employment numerous times and threatened to show up at her place of employment. PCS purports to be located in Brooklyn, New York.

The company is not licensed by the Washington State of Department of Financial Institutions or by the Washington State Department of Licensing and is not registered with the Washington State Department of Revenue.

Payday Loan Debt Collection Laws

Debt collectors cannot state or imply that failure to pay a debt is a crime. They cannot call before 8:00 a.m. or after 9:00 p.m. They cannot harass or abuse consumers, or contact consumers' places of employment.

Collection activities are subject to the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Therefore, if you have questions regarding debt collection laws please contact the Federal Trade Commission at 382-4357 (1-877-FTC HELP), or online at www.ftc.gov.

Verify Licenses

DFI strongly recommends that residents verify the license of any lender with which they consider doing business with. Consumers are urged to verify licensing status prior to giving the lender nonpublic personal information, such as social security number and checking account access. You can verify a license with DFI at www.dfi.wa.gov or by calling 1.877.RING DFI (746-4334).

Report Violators

If you feel you have been a victim of a scam, please contact the Federal Trade Commission at 382-4357 (1-877-FTC HELP), or online at www.ftc.gov. Also, victims should report their experiences to the Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.ic3.gov.

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