A debt collector, angered that a disabled US Army veteran was living off of disability payments, told him he “should have died” in war instead of “taking advantage of” other Americans.
Minnesota-based debt collection agency Gurstel Chargo is now facing a lawsuit for verbally abusing the Army vet over a $6,000 defaulted student loan, Courthouse News reports.
“If you would have served our country better you would not be a disabled veteran living off Social Security while the rest of us honest Americans work our asses off,” one of the agency’s debt collectors allegedly told the vet. “Too bad, you should have died.”
Michael Collier was declared 100 per cent disabled after suffering permanent spine and head injuries while in the Army. As a result, both Collier and his wife receive disability payments from the federal Social Security Administration, which are exempt from seizure by debt collectors.
But in an attempt to collect on the defaulted student loan, the collector seized the money from Collier’s wife’s savings account. The credit union then proceeded to freeze her account.
The Colliers filed an objection and requested a court hearing, at which the couple was told their frozen funds were exempt from such garnishment.
But the debt collection agency’s lawyer continued to harass the couple. Telling Collier “he would need to get a lawyer in order to get his money back,” an unidentified paralegal cursed at and threatened him over the phone.
“F–k you!” the paralegal allegedly said, “Pay us your money! You can’t afford an attorney. You owe us. I hope your wife divorces you.”