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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Consumer Protection Law
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Experience:  Lawyer
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I received a letter from Oxford Law, LLC stating I owe $2,297.89

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I received a letter from Oxford Law, LLC stating I owe $2,297.89 to their client Diverse Funding Associates, LLC for a Crescent Jewelers account from 2004. I called them and they said they would settle for $1,000 if I paid it today. They were very shady and kept passing me from person to person to try and get me to pay today and post date it for the 28th. I live in Arizona and believe the statue of limitations has expired and it is a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. What would you advise I do?

My name is XXXXX XXXXX I'd be happy to answer your questions today.

The statute of limitations for breach of a written contract in Arizona is six years. Ariz. Rev. Stat., § 12-548. However, the statute is reset each time a payment is made and can be extended when a consumer agrees to pay an expired debt. Also, many credit card companies have an agreement that provides that another state's law applies to any disputes. If that state's statute of limitations is longer than 9 years (and it is, in some areas), then the company may be able to sue you in that state and get a judgment against you. A judge in Arizona would apply that Arizona statute (which means that the six year limitation applies), but a judge in another state may apply that state's laws instead.

You are correct that attempting to collect an expired debt is a violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. One option in this situation is to send a letter, via certified mail, insisting that they cease all contact, noting that their behavior is a violation of the law, and noting the $1,000 penalty per violation. Here is a couple of sample letters that may help.

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I contacted them today and they asked me if I would like to them ask the Attorney if he would reduce the debt and I said yes. Then they came back with the counter offer of $1,000.00. Does that constitute me the consumer agreeing to pay an expired debt? I am not listed on the debt? This was an account he had prior to us being married and is in his name only.

An agreement to pay someone else's debt would only be valid if it were in writing. Also, statements made in attempting to negotiate a settlement cannot be used against a person as evidence of liability.
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