Can a debt be transferred to a collection agency without warning?

UPDATED: Oct 11, 2011

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Can a debt be transferred to a collection agency without warning?

I received a bill from my HOA last week stating the balance due of $285, $200 of which was delinquent because I did not get any bills from them. The due date is the last day of this month. Then 3 days later with the full payment already mailed out, I received a lawyer’s letter saying that I was in default and wanted $485; $285 were lawyer fees.

Asked on October 11, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Arizona


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Yes, in many situations a creditor will assing his or her claims for an obligation owed to a debt collection company without any notice to the debtor. This apparently happened in your situation.

Since you have made the full payment before you received notice of the increase in the amount owed you should write the homeowner's association about the situation stating that the obligation has been paid in full while keeping a copy of the letter for future reference.

You also need to carefully review all documents concerning your dispute with your homeowner's association for a basis as to the claim for attorneys fees. Most likely there is no legal basis for such fees.

Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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