Booted by Parking Solutions? Fight back!

Sue Parking Solutions

Parking Solutions, a Salt Lake City, Utah based company, issues tickets and immobilizes vehicles for various businesses around the Salt Lake valley. In some of these cases, they are doing so illegally.

Parking Solutions’ deceptive practices

One typical scenario occurs in the parking lot on the corner of 600 East and 400 South in Salt Lake City, Utah. In that lot, Parking Solutions issues tickets or immobilizes vehicles with a boot when one of the occupants goes to Jimmy John’s which is technically not a part of the parking lot served by the surrounding businesses like Cafe Zupas, Tonyburgers, or Jamba Juice. The problem, however, is that does not automatically constitute a violation of the posted parking rules.

Parking Solutions Salt Lake posted rules at Jimmy Johns

Think about it. If you go to Jamba Juice, a company for which that parking lot is intended, and your friend who drove with you goes to Jimmy John’s, you did not violate the parking rules that are posted on the property. You patronized Jamba Juice as the rules allow. No problem then? Wrong. Parking Solutions has an agent lying in wait to ticket or boot your car because one of the occupants went to Jimmy John’s. He, in his blissful ignorance, believes the patently illogical idea that none of the occupants can leave the property even if the others actually patronize the intended businesses.

Until you use [one of these businesses] you are trespassing.

Daniel Graves, Parking Solutions

Parking Solutions’ past criminal conduct

This problem has grown so bad that Parking Solutions employee Daniel Graves was actually charged with interfering with an officer in discharge of official duties for booting a Salt Lake City Fire Department emergency vehicle and his subsequent refusal to remove the immobilization device under direct orders by the police department. Ironically, Daniel Graves even claimed the police were extorting him when they demanded he remove two boots from their emergency vehicle. Justin Bird, Parking Solutions owner, seems to completely support such ridiculous conduct by Daniel Graves on behalf of Parking Solutions as he personally participated in refusing to remove the boot from the emergency vehicle, has been known to deny valid requests for refunds, and may have lied to government officials in a recent investigation over his deceptive business practices. Justin Bird even plead guilty on behalf of Parking Solutions to criminal charges of operating without a proper business license.

Parking Solutions Salt Lake City, Utah

In any event, Salt Lake City consumers should not be deceived by Parking Solutions’ unlawful and deceptive conduct and they should not pay any extortionate amounts. Instead, save your receipts to show you patronized one of the businesses the parking lot serves and contact a consumer protection attorney who can sue Parking Solutions on your behalf. Under Utah law you may be entitled to a refund of the $75.00 you paid to Parking Solutions and in some cases may even be entitled to a much higher actual damages award if Parking Solutions illegally tickets or boots your car and you can prove you patronized one of the businesses served by that parking lot. Either way, don’t be a victim.

Please note that the listing of any specific company or individual is not meant to state or imply that they committed any illegal or improper act; rather only that an investigation is or was being conducted by private attorneys to determine whether legal rights have been violated. The statements expressed herein are statements of our opinion only.

Chase Fined $216 Million for Illegally Robo-Signing Affidavits and Selling Zombie Debts

JPMorgan Chose Fined for Zombie Debt Collection Practices


If you owe JPMorgan Chase for a zombie debt or if Portfolio Recovery, LVNV Funding, Midland Funding, or other junk debt buyer has filed a lawsuit against you to collect a Chase debt, you may be able to get your lawsuit thrown out of court.

On July 8, 2015, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), Attorneys General in 47 states, and the District of Columbia have taken action against JPMorgan Chase for selling “zombie debts” to junk debt buyers and illegally robo-signing court documents. “Zombie debt” refers to accounts that were inaccurate, settled, discharged in bankruptcy, not actually owed, or otherwise not collectible. “Robo-signing” refers to the practice of automatically signing affidavits under oath without actually reviewing the material on which that oath is based.

“Chase sold bad credit card debt and robo-signed documents in violation of law.”
Richard Cordray, Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau

Under the administrative orders, Chase is required to take certain actions to protect consumers from its unlawful practices. Chase will now be required to carefully document and confirm its debts before selling them to debt buyers or filing collections lawsuits and it is barred from selling certain debts. It must also prohibit debt buyers from reselling debt. Chase was ordered to permanently stop all attempts to collect, enforce in court, or sell 528,000 existing accounts. CFPB Director Richard Cordray said, “Today we are ordering Chase to permanently halt collections on more than 528,000 accounts and overhaul its debt-sales practices. We will continue to be vigilant in taking action against deceptive debt sales and collections practices that exploit consumers.”

Chase has also been ordered to pay at least $50 million in consumer refunds, $136 million in penalties and payments to the CFPB and the included 47 states, and a $30 million penalty to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) in a related action.

Chase Engaged in Unfair, Deceptive, or Abusive Acts and Practices

According to the CFPB, Chase violated the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act’s prohibitions against unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts and practices. Specifically, the CFPB and 47 states held that Chase:

  • Sold accounts that had been settled, fully paid, discharged in bankruptcy, identified as fraudulent, subject to a payment plan, no longer owned by Chase, or were otherwise not enforceable.
  • Sold accounts with missing or incorrect information about the amount owed and the amounts already paid.
  • Assisted third party and junk debt buyers in collecting debt deceptively by providing incorrect or inadequate information.
  • Robo-signed more than 150,000 affidavits and filed more than 528,000 debt collection lawsuits against consumers.
  • Systematically failed to prepare, review, and execute truthful statements as required by law.
  • Obtained judgments in debt collection lawsuits for incorrect amounts owed due to its calculation errors.
  • Failed to notify consumers and the courts when Chase discovered these issues.

Enforcement of CFPB and State Actions

Under the enforcement portions of these actions, Chase has been ordered to:

  • Cease all collection efforts on 528,000 consumer accounts that were sent to debt collection litigation between January 1, 2009 to June 30, 2014.
  • Cease collections, enforcement, sale, and credit reporting of any judgments it has obtained on those accounts.
  • Pay at least $50 million in cash refunds to consumers damaged by Chase’s unfair, deceptive, or abusive acts and practices.
  • Prohibit debt buyers and junk debt buyers from reselling accounts purchased from Chase, though they can sell the accounts back to Chase.
  • Confirm that its debts are collectable before selling the debts to debt buyers. The debts also cannot have been paid, discharged in bankruptcy, must not be the result of identity theft or other fraud, settled, or otherwise uncollectable.
  • Before sale, Chase must provide detailed documentation of the debt confirming the debt is accurate and enforceable.
  • For at least three years after selling the debt, Chase must provide debt buyers additional account information including; agreements, account statements, payment histories, and records of account disputes.
  • Notify consumers that their debt was sold and provide consumers their account information including; who purchased the debt, the amount owed at the time of the sale, and a notice that consumers can request additional account information for free.
  • Not sell zombie debts and other debts without documentation, including; debts that have been charged off or unpaid for more than three years, debts in litigation, debts owed by a service member, debts owed by a deceased consumer, and debts where a payment plan has been arranged.
  • Withdraw, dismiss, or otherwise terminate all debt collection litigation pending after January 1, 2009.
  • Stop robo-signing affidavits. Chase declarations must now be hand-signed, must reflect the accurate date of being signed by hand, and must be based on direct knowledge and personal review of the business records of the person signing. Furthermore, documentation supporting the affidavits must be actual records of the debt, verified to be accurate, and not created solely for litigation.
  • Verify specific account information about the debts when filing a debt collection lawsuit. That includes the name of the creditor at the time of the last payment on the account, the date of the last extension of credit, the date of last payment on the account, the amount of the debt owed, and a detailed accounting of any post charge off fees or interest.
  • Implement policies, procedures, systems, and controls to ensure compliance with federal consumer financial laws when selling and collecting debts.
  • Pay at least $50 million in consumer refunds.
  • Pay at least a $30 million civil penalty to the CFPB.
  • Pay a $30 million civil penalty to the OCC on a related matter.
  • Pay $106 million in payments to the 47 states who joined in the enforcement action.

California, Mississippi, and Wyoming were the only three states that did not join in as part of the settlement with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. California has litigation pending against JPMorgan for engaging in unlawful and fraudulent debt collection methods involving over 100,000 California consumers over a three-year period. The California Attorney General has accused JPMorgan of flooding the California courts with thousands of questionable cases every month. Mississippi is also continuing its own separate lawsuit against Chase that is ongoing at this time. The Wyoming Attorney General’s office could not be reached for comment on why they did not participate in the settlement.

If you owe JPMorgan Chase for a zombie debt or if Portfolio Recovery, LVNV Funding, Midland Funding, or other junk debt buyer has filed a lawsuit against you to collect a Chase debt, you may be able to get your lawsuit thrown out of court. Contact us now to find out if you have a case. You can also download the CFPB Consent Order to learn more.

Consumer Watchdogs are the Best Form of Consumer Protection

Consumer watchdogs fight for everyone’s consumer rights.  Consumer protection legislation has been passed in every state to allow consumers to act as these watchdogs, legally known as private attorneys general, to protect and enforce their consumer rights when those rights are threatened by abusive or deceptive companies.  In Utah, for example, the Utah Consumer Sales Practices Act (UCSPA) allows consumers to sue companies that act in a deceptive, fraudulent, or abusive manner.  Most states have similar consumer rights laws.

Without these laws consumers would find themselves venerable to abusive and deceptive sales practices with little recourse.  Consumer watchdog complaints would go largely unresolved.  For example, in door-to-door sales the Utah Consumer Sales Practices Act allows a three day right to cancel the agreement whereas without the Act no such right would exist.  Other consumer rights are also protected under the Act.  For example, companies cannot lie about the benefits, uses, sponsorships, or performance characteristics of a product or service nor can they falsely claim a used item is new.

The Utah Consumer Sales Practices Act also allows consumer watchdogs to recover a minimum award of $2000 even if actual damages are less.  This is great news because many consumer disputes involve damages that are substantially lower than $2000.  This minimum award greatly increases the risk to a deceptive company if the case winds up in court which encourages them to seek settlements for more reasonable resolutions without the need for judicial intervention.

In complicated cases, consumer protection lawyers can help you, the consumer watchdog, enforce consumer rights laws but some consumers can do so on their own without legal assistance.  For them, small claims courts are the best way to recover money from a company that has harmed you and refuses to issue a refund.  Small claims courts use simplified rules of evidence and procedure to allow consumers their day in court without the expense of hiring a consumer attorney.  Many consumer protection attorneys, however, offer services on a contingency basis allowing consumers to hire an attorney essentially for free since the attorney only gets paid from the proceeds of a settlement or verdict is the consumer’s favor.

When consumers sue a company for deceptive sales practices they are consumer watchdogs for everyone whether they hire an attorney or handle the case themselves.  Lawsuits often awaken the company owners to the consequences of their wrongful behavior though unfortunately some abusive companies are already aware they are abusing consumers since doing so is profitable.  For them, ignoring consumer complaints is standard procedure since many consumers do not understand their rights or how to enforce those rights.  In those cases, the best consumer protection possible is for consumer watchdogs to act as private attorneys general and hold abusive and deceptive companies accountable.

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