ZipDebt Creditor & Debt Purchaser Briefing Series
Midland Funding LLC, Midland Credit Management, Encore Capital Group
If you have a credit card or other debt account that has been sold to Midland Funding LLC and you are searching for reliable information on this company, you’ve come to the right place! Below I will explain some key facts and answer questions frequently asked about Midland Funding and how to resolve debt balances with this company. In many cases, consumers can work out arrangements on their own with Midland. However, results are often much better with professional support. If you would like professional help in resolving an account purchased by Midland Funding, please read my series on full service Tailored Debt Settlement, then email me at [email protected] with the background information on your situation.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Midland Funding LLC?
Midland Funding LLC is a large and well established purchaser of delinquent credit card debt accounts. Major bank creditors like Capital One, Citibank, and many others commonly sell accounts to Midland Funding LLC.
Note: If your debt was acquired by Portfolio Recovery Associates, please note that this is a completely different company with different procedures. Here is a reliable information page on how to resolve your debt with Portfolio Recovery.
Who Owns Midland Funding LLC?
Midland Funding LLC is owned by Encore Capital Group, the parent company located in San Diego, CA, not to be confused with Encore Receivables Management, an unrelated debt collection agency. Encore Capital Group is the largest publicly traded debt buyer in the United States.
What is Midland Credit Management, Inc. or MCM, Inc.?
Midland Credit Management, Inc., abbreviated as MCM, Inc., is the debt collection organization that services files acquired by Midland Funding LLC. A wholly owned subsidiary of Encore Capital Group, MCM, Inc. is typically the actual company debtors will be speaking with to work out payment arrangements or settlements on their purchased accounts.
Midland Funding Debt Collection
Collection activity on debts bought by Midland Funding LLC are usually handled by Midland Credit Management, Inc., or MCM, Inc. An initial notice is sent to the debtor which identifies Midland’s ownership of the account, states required disclosures, and provides instructions for payment.
How to Negotiate Safely with Midland, zipdebt.com: Strategy Recommendation #1
My first recommendation to consumers wanting to resolve debts purchased by Midland is a financial safety tip: Do NOT use the outdated and possibly dangerous strategy of Debt Validation, also called “disputing the debt.” Yes, I realize that numerous other websites still recommend this approach, which relies on language in the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, and aims to “force” the purchaser to back down if they cannot prove the obligation is owed by debtor. The problem nowadays is that the debt buyers usually DO have the necessary documentation to confirm the debt’s validity. Given that validation demands are viewed negatively by those on the receiving end, if one’s goal is to work out an amicable resolution, this approach is entirely counterproductive. In my professional practice I never request Debt Validation. The only exception would be an instance where there really is a bonafide dispute about the obligation.
Strategy Recommendation #2
My second recommendation to consumers seeking to fully repay their debt is to simply call Midland Credit Management, Inc., and work out a long-term payment arrangement. Full balance repayment arrangements can often be negotiated for 12, 24, or even 36 month terms, at zero percent interest. In fact, all payments made by the debtor go toward reducing the balance, as there are no fees or interest being added to the balance acquired at the time the debt was a charge- off by the original creditor. An important tip here is that payments can be made ADJUSTABLE if you work it correctly. If you’re in a temporary financial crunch, for example, you can offer very small payments to start, like $15-20 per month for 3-6 months, then step up to higher payments later when you’re doing better financially.
Strategy Recommendation #3
My third recommendation to debtors wanting to settle debt with Midland Funding LLC for a discounted payoff is to set your settlement expectations according to the collection status of the account. Recently purchased accounts being worked directly by MCM, Inc. are usually easier to settle than those stamped for “pre-legal status” by Midland. Those accounts already placed with third party collection law firms represent a higher level of difficulty, with a further distinction between pre- lawsuit filing or post. Do not expect low percentage settlements with this debt buyer just because “they bought my debt for pennies on the dollar.”
Timeline for Negotiating Settlements with Midland Funding LLC
Time is equal to risk when dealing with defaulted collection accounts in general, and that is no different when we’re talking about a debt acquired by Midland Funding. The longer a consumer waits to work out either a payment arrangement or a settlement, the higher the probability that the account will escalate to legal status.
Typically within 30-60 days of purchasing your account, you will receive a friendly notice from Midland Credit Management, Inc. with instructions for accessing their online payment portal, and providing contact information for you to call on the phone and work out an arrangement.
Within 2-4 months after purchase, some accounts are selected by Midland Funding for “pre-legal status,” meaning that eventually the account will be assigned to a law firm for legal action.
The best time to negotiate a settlement with Midland Funding is prior to the account being selected for legal status, so if possible, consumers should respond quickly to the initial notification.
If your account is selected for “pre-legal,” do not panic! Get on the phone and work something out before a law firm gets involved. It is still possible to work out either payment arrangements or settlements on an account that is designated for “pre- legal,” but the clock is ticking.
Once Midland Funding assigns an account to a law firm, then you will no longer be able to speak directly with representatives at Midland and will be referred back to the law firm. It’s best to negotiate a settlement or payment arrangement BEFORE the law firm files a lawsuit against you, but it is still possible to settle even after a lawsuit has been filed, and even after a judgment has been entered against you. Generally speaking though, legal settlements are frequently for a majority of the balance compared to the deeper discounts that are often available if the settlement is negotiated before escalation has taken place.
Does Midland Show Up to Court?
Yes! If Midland Credit Management, Inc. selects an account for pre-legal status, this is not a bluff. If there is no arrangement made, they will eventually assign the account for legal action. Collection law firms file numerous lawsuits around the country annually on behalf of Midland Funding, LLC. It is unwise to assume that a claim by Midland will be easily defended in court, or that they will not show up.
How Can I Avoid Being Sued by Midland Funding LLC?
The short answer is make payments, even small payments like $25 per month on balance in the thousands. Do something to show you’re not just going to completely ignore the existence of the obligation. Time equals risk after a debt buyer purchases a credit card account. It’s rare for any debt buyer to immediately step up to legal action right after acquiring an account, and Midland Funding LLC is no different. There is usually a period of at least 2 months, and often much longer, for a debtor to work out payment arrangements or a settlement with Midland, before the account escalates in status.
How Do I Remove a Midland Funding Entry on my Credit Report?
When a debt buyer acquires an account from one of your creditors, they will generally add their own entry to your personal credit report. This can be frustrating and annoying to consumers, but it’s not as significant an issue as it used to be. The reason for this is that Midland Funding, LLC took a lead role in the debt buying industry to change how accounts are reported. It used to be that a negative entry would remain for up to 7 years on the credit report. However, Midland Funding will remove their credit report entry after only TWO YEARS beyond the point where the account was paid or settled. This means that there is little point to filing credit report disputes relative to Midland Funding entries, since they drop off so quickly now anyway.
Midland Funding, LLC is a sophisticated and professional debt buying organization with a track record of playing fair with industry professionals and consumers as well. While some consumers might be angry that one of their accounts was sold to this company, and start out by looking for information on how to “fight Midland Funding,” or how to “beat Midland Funding in court,” the reality is that a far better approach is to simply work out payment arrangements or a settlement to resolve the matter. Further, Midland Credit Management, Inc., collecting on behalf of Midland Funding, LLC, is unlikely to commit collection violations under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, so hiring an attorney to “go after” Midland for violations is not a strategy I would recommend.
HELP & SUPPORT
For consumers looking for more help and support in resolving a debt acquired by Midland Funding, LLC, I offer full-service negotiation via my Tailored Debt Settlement Program (fee 15% of savings). For more information on my unique approach, please read the 5-page series starting here.