Judge James Stucky ordered two collection agencies to cease all debt collection efforts in West Virginia until they become licensed with the state. The action is against Frontier Financial Group, LLC and Ezell Williams. The companies must also stop collecting payday loans, which are outlawed in West Virginia.
West Virginia has a ban on payday loans, and Attorney General Darrell McGraw upholds that ban whether the operation is a storefront loan company or an online lender. Furthermore, attempts to collect on payday loans obtained by West Virginia residents are illegal.
Since the debts are illegal, they are not eligible for collection efforts even if the collection agency is licensed to operate as a debt collector with the state. In this case, the debts were illegal and the collection agencies were illegally contacting debtors for the purpose of collecting on the debt, yet failed to obtain the necessary licenses in order to contact West Virginia debtors.
Frontier Financial Group, LLC is a debt collector based in Nevada. It’s owners include Martin G. Mazzura, Salvatore Mazzura, and Paula Engelbrecht, all of Nevada.
Ezell Williams is a collection agency owned by Charles L. Dickey and Charles L. Dickey III. The agency and its owners are in Illinois.
Both debt collectors were attempting to collect defaulted debts that originated from payday loans online websites operated by Money & More. Money & More previously agreed to stop approving payday loan applications from West Virginia clients and to cancel all debts owed by them. Recent attempts to collect on debts sourced by Money & More are in direct violation of their April 17, 2009 agreement with the State.
Attorney General Darrell McGraw released the following statement regarding unlicensed companies that conduct business in West Virginia:
West Virginia residents who are being harrassed by debt collectors should contact the attorney general at 1-800-368-8808. Harrassment is illegal in any state, and collection of illegal payday loans is outlawed in West Virginia.
Long is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a B.A. in Industrial Relations. He subsequently received his Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University. His Certificate in Financial Planning was issued by Florida State University.
Long has achieved the Accredited Credit Counselor and Accredited Financial Counselor certifications through the Association for Financial Counseling, Planning and Education. Long originally achieved the Certified Credit Counselor designation through the National Institute for Financial Education.
In addition to years of nonprofit leadership, Long has been an innovator in the field of volunteer tax return preparation programs. He assists volunteer associations and nonprofit organizations who seek to integrate credit counseling and asset-building programs with free personal income tax preparation. His approach to using free credit reports as both an incentive and a screening tool for placement into asset-building programs has been shared with members of the National Community Tax Coalition, the EITC-Carolinas Initiative of MDC, Inc. and nonprofit groups across the Carolinas.
Long assists members of our armed forces in the Carolinas, Iowa, Rhode Island, Georgia and Germany with financial readiness. Please support our Soldiers, Marines, Airmen and Sailors!
"The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not."