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What is Innovative Recovery?
Innovative Recovery, Inc. is a debt collection agency based in Dallas, TX that was founded in 1994.
As a third-party debt collection agency, Innovative Recovery collects debt on behalf of other people and organizations. In addition to collecting debts, Innovative Recovery reports to all three credit bureaus and provides legal services. 1
Innovative Recovery’s other names
Innovative Recovery also operates under the name ResidentCollect, Inc. 2 However, be careful not to confuse Innovative Recovery with Innovative Recovery Solutions, LLC, which is based in Phoenix.
Who does Innovative Recovery collect for?
Innovative Recovery, Inc. collects debts owed to property owners and operators. Specifically, they collect overdue rent and payments to cover property damage.
If you’re getting calls or letters from Innovative Recovery or you see their name on your credit report, it probably means that they think you owe a former landlord or property owner rent or other payments.
Is Innovative Recovery a scam?
No, Innovative Recovery isn’t a scam. They’re a legitimate debt collection agency registered with the state of Texas. 3
However, even though they’re a legit company, Innovative Recovery could still violate your rights. It’s common for debt collectors to behave aggressively or unethically.
You should also be vigilant about scammers posing as Innovative Recovery representatives to collect money from you. Be sure to verify any debts you’re contacted about before you make any payments. To do so, get in touch with Innovative Recovery directly using their online contact form or the contact information below.
VIDEO: Innovative Recovery in 2 Minutes—Fix Your Credit Report & Know Your Rights
How to stop Innovative Recovery from calling you
Innovative Recovery will call you, email you, or send you letters if they believe you have an unsettled debt. The reason they’re calling you is simple—they want to pressure you into paying up.
Unfortunately, Innovative Recovery representatives will keep trying to contact you unless you pay the debt, prove that it doesn’t belong to you, or reach an agreement with them (or with your landlord or property management company).
However, you can get Innovative Recovery to stop calling you—at least temporarily—by sending them something called a debt verification letter.
Send a debt verification letter
A debt verification letter is a formal request that obligates a debt collector to provide evidence of a debt. You must send it within 30 days of them first contacting you.
Benefits of sending a debt verification letter
Sending a debt verification letter has three benefits:
- You’ll prevent Innovative Recovery from calling you during this period: When you send a debt verification letter, third-party debt collection agencies like Innovative Recovery are required by law to stop contacting you until they can provide evidence that you actually owe the debt they’re trying to collect.
- You’ll get more information about the debt: You should never pay a debt that you don’t recognize. Forcing Innovative Recovery to provide documentation will help you determine whether this is a legitimate debt that you actually need to pay.
- You may successfully disown the debt: If Innovative Recovery can’t provide more information about the debt (which is frequently the case), then they have no choice but to delete it from your records.
Beware of the statute of limitations
The verification materials that you receive may show that your debt has passed the statute of limitations. This is a legal limit to the amount of time that Innovative Recovery has to sue you over a debt, after which point it becomes time-barred debt.
If this is the case, you can send Innovative Recovery a letter telling them to stop contacting you. Legally, they’ll have to abide by that.
The statute of limitations on most debts is between 3 and 6 years, but the exact amount of time depends on several factors, including the state you live in. The best approach is to check your state attorney general’s website and email their office if the information you’re looking for isn’t available online.
How to remove Innovative Recovery from your credit report
If your credit score is suffering as a result of Innovative Recovery debt, there are two ways to recover:
1. Dispute the debt with all three credit bureaus
If you think the debt that Innovative Recovery is trying to collect isn’t yours, dispute the item on your credit report. You can also dispute debts that are older than 7 years (measured from the date of your first missed payment)—by law, they’re supposed to fall off your credit report by then.
To dispute a debt for free, send a credit dispute letter to the credit bureaus that are showing Innovative Recovery on your credit report.
To find out which credit bureaus you need to send the letter to, request your free credit report from each of the major credit bureaus (Experian, Equifax, and TransUnion) at AnnualCreditReport.com. If they don’t respond to your dispute within 30–45 days, then they’re legally obligated to remove the item in question.
2. Negotiate with Innovative Recovery
Unfortunately, if the debt is legitimate and it’s less than 7 years old, removing Innovative Recovery from your credit report will be very difficult (although not impossible).
Your best move at this point is to simply pay the debt. Newer credit scoring models ignore paid-off collection accounts, which means paying off your collection will boost your credit score even if you can’t remove the item.
However, when you pay, there are two negotiation strategies you can try as a last-ditch attempt to remove Innovative Recovery from your credit report:
- Pay for delete: You might be able to convince Innovative Recovery to remove the negative mark in exchange for paying off the debt. You can open these negotiations by sending them a pay-for-delete letter.
- Goodwill deletion: This is an alternate strategy you can try after paying your debt. Once the account is paid off, you can send Innovative Recovery a goodwill letter template asking them to empathize with your situation and remove the mark from your credit report as an act of kindness.
How to deal with Innovative Recovery harassment
Unless you tell them not to, Innovative Recovery will keep contacting you until you pay off or settle your debt. However, there are restrictions on how they can go about doing this.
Restrictions on Innovative Recovery
When attempting to collect payments from you, Innovative Recovery must adhere to the regulations specified in the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. This is a federal law that prevents debt collectors from engaging in predatory behavior, such as lying to you or calling you incessantly or at unreasonable hours.
Innovative Recovery representatives also need to follow the rules set out in the Telephone Consumer Protection Act. It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with these laws so that you can take action against Innovative Recovery if they do something illegal.
Can I sue Innovative Recovery for harassment?
Yes, you can sue Innovative Recovery for harassment. If you can show that they’ve violated your rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, then you can collect $1,000 in statutory damages for each violation as well as payment for any damages that you’ve sustained as a result of their violation. Innovative Recovery will also have to pay your attorney fees and court costs.
How to file a complaint against Innovative Recovery
If a debt collector violates your rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act or does something illegal, then you can report them to the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, or your state attorney general. From there, you’ll be able to find out whether you can also sue Innovative Recovery.
Another option is filing a complaint on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website, but this might not have the outcome you’re hoping for. Bear in mind that the BBB is actually a private organization that has no affiliation with the US government. They’ll forward your complaint to Innovative Recovery, but there’s no guarantee that the agency will address it in a satisfactory manner. What’s more, if your dispute is sent to an arbitrator, then you may give up your right to take Innovative Recovery to court.