Southwest Recovery Services, or SRS, is listed on one or more of your credit reports, but you’ve never heard of this company. You believe it’s causing a drop in your score, and now, you’re unable to get a mortgage, new credit card, or loan as a result. What can you do?
This is a common situation, and there may have been a mistake.
Financial experts recommend checking each of your credit reports from the three bureaus—Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion—annually because of the risk of mistakes.
When you think there’s a mistake reported on your credit, whether it’s Southwest Recovery Services or another listed company, you can dispute it. You have legal rights under multiple consumer protection laws to do so. Often, you have to go beyond these measures and work with an attorney to take care of the situation.
Southwest Recovery Services is also known as SRS. This company is a debt-collecting agency. The agency works as a third-party collector, which is why you aren’t going to be familiar with the name initially. Third-party collectors are hired by other companies who want to outsource debt collection. This is also known as debt recovery.
SRS gets paid on a contingency basis. They don’t get paid unless they’re able to recover money. This can lead to more aggressive collection tactics.
Southwest Recovery Services isn’t a scam. They’re a legitimate collection agency, but they might contact you about a debt you don’t owe. There could also be incorrect information on your credit report, so contacting an attorney to verify a debt is a critical first step.
SRS is headquartered in Addison, Texas, but they work with businesses from around the country.
This company collects for a range of diverse businesses across most industries. Specific industries SRS collects for include:
Southwest Recovery Services is calling you because they believe you owe a debt. Whether or not you do can be the question. The company might also call you if they’re trying to locate your relative.
Any time a debt collector contacts you, legally they are supposed to let you know why they’re calling. They’re required under federal law to be transparent, and debt collectors are supposed to proactively inform you of your rights, including your right to dispute the debt they’re calling about.
When you get calls, there are things that a debt collection agency can’t say or do. For example, they can’t use harassment, threats, or deceptive tactics. Debt collectors can’t call you before a certain time in the morning—8 a.m. They also can’t contact you after 9 p.m.
If you aren’t allowed to receive contact from debt collectors at work, and you tell them that, they have to stop.
Additionally, if you send a cease and desist letter to SRS, they should stop calling you. This doesn’t alleviate your responsibility for a debt if it’s legitimate, but it does put limitations on contact that could otherwise be stressful.
If you send a cease and desist letter to a third-party debt recovery company and they don’t stop contact, you may need to consult an FDCPA attorney.
Since Southwest Recovery Services isn’t the originator of debts or accounts, the first step is to contact a consumer protection attorney specializing in the FCRA. It’s best to talk to an attorney before saying anything to a debt collector, because speaking to them could worsen the situation and even restart the statute of limitations on a debt.
Once you contact an FCRA attorney, they can review your case and determine the best steps. Often, an FCRA attorney will submit a dispute with Southwest Recovery Systems on your behalf, which is your legal right under federal law.
From this point, you should also check your credit reports with the three bureaus if you haven’t already. Southwest Recovery Services may or may not be listed as a collections account.
There are so many reasons that debt collectors could call you about something wrong or that you don’t owe. Consumers often aren’t aware of how frequently errors occur.
For example, maybe the original creditor reported inaccurate or incomplete information to SRS. You might also have credit information mixed up with someone with a similar name or Social Security number. The information could be outdated, or there might be one wrong part, like a payment date or the balance.
Whether one thing is wrong or the entire debt isn’t yours when an attorney disputes a debt, the company should stop all collection activities, and the FCRA requires them to investigate your dispute. Most companies have 30 days to complete an investigation after getting notice of a dispute. Sometimes, the company may have 45 days to complete a dispute investigation.
Then, Southwest Recovery Services should report its findings. If the information was, in fact, incorrect, whether partially or completely, it should be deleted from your credit report, and you should no longer be contacted about it or responsible for the debt.
While there are legal requirements for debt collectors to remove wrong information or information that’s outdated from consumer credit reports, they’re not always compliant. If you feel that Southwest Recovery Services is non-compliant with the FCRA or is violating your rights as a consumer, you may need to take things further and hire an FCRA attorney. We advise that the first step when you hear from someone trying to collect a debt is contacting a consumer protection attorney before you do anything else.
Fair Credit can help, and our team of FCRA attorneys offers free case reviews to get started and outline the appropriate action in your situation.