As I've already ponted out, they're not being locked up because they owe some one money, there are other charges involved. But hey, let's ignore that.
but hey ignore the obvious on how you collect on a civil debt..........and instead support overhanded reaching and abuse by a private company.
The WSJ article is better written and goes along with what you are saying. It still has some questions that it does not answer.
Also, what is bankrupting states is extravagant entitlement programs and pensions for state and public workers. People are working for 20-30 years, retiring and collecting retirement for 20-30 years, with COLAs, and medical benefits.
Laconian, let's break this down.....would I rather have a sheriff going around to arrest someone that didn't pay their debt, or would I rather have them going out an arresting a pedophile? Budgets are budgets and you only have so many hours out on a patrol....I would rather utilize that resource (their hours on patrol) for something useful, like going an catching the local *** offender hanging around a school yard, or the person dealing prescription drugs on school grounds, or the person that is abusing their wife, or the person that is committing home invasions. I don't want the police being used to supplement the profit of a private business because the business is too cheap to hire investigators.
like i said earlier, the author first mentions this in the context of civil matters, but then brings a criminal matter into it... If its a matter of not paying a fine imposed by a court for the commission of a crime, im all for it. If its a matter of someone who doesnt show up to court at all, i can understand jailing them for contempt. But If its a matter of a debt collector underhandedly using the criminal justice system to get their money out of someone for a purely civil matter, and the person has actually showed up to court and made some effort to resolve the issue, then for one i think theres ethical concerns with it and for two i dont think its a good use of public resources.
Lets say in a purely legal sense the court finds in favor of the collector, but the party has fallen on hard times and simply has no money or assets to pay the collector... is it fair for the court to issue an order of contempt and have the debtor thrown in jail because they havent paid? The purpose of a court is to do justice, and in that case, i dont see that as doing justice. a better solution would be to allow the defendant the opportunity to pursue other options such as bankruptcy, or to arrange some sort of payment plan. By tossing them in jail, 1) the collector isnt going to get their money since the party wont be working and 2)its just going to transfer the cost from the private company onto the public. The later is the biggest problem i see with this. If a judge is in a company's pocket, i can see lots of contempt charges being thrown down, lots of debtors being jailed to get them to pay up, and the collection firm enjoying pure profit while not having to pay any operating costs since all the cost of finding and forcing the debtor to pay is being passed onto the taxpayers.
Do you guys have a small clains court and process to handle these a bit cheaper?
Related and provided better information on what is happening
The backlash is a reaction to sloppy, incomplete or even false documentation that can result in borrowers having no idea before being locked up that they were sued to collect an outstanding debt. The debt-collection industry says such errors are extremely rare, adding that warrants usually are sought only after all other efforts to persuade borrowers to pay have failed.Arrest warrants generally can be issued if a borrower defies a court order to repay a debt or doesn't show up in court. Retailers, credit-card issuers, landlords and debt collectors are the most frequent seekers of such orders, according to court filings and interviews with judges and lawyers.http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...811636610.htmlIn September 2009, Jeffrey Stearns, a concrete-company owner, answered a knock at the door from a ******* County, Ind., deputy sheriff. The deputy was holding a warrant to arrest Mr. Stearns for not paying $4,024.88 owed to a unit of American International Group Inc. on a loan for his pickup truck.
After being handcuffed in front of his four children, Mr. Stearns, 29 years old, spent two nights in jail, where he said he was strip-searched and sprayed for lice. Court records show he was released after agreeing to pay $1,500 to the loan company. "I didn't even know I was being sued," he said, though he doesn't dispute owing the money. "It's the scariest thing that ever happened to me."
Mr. Stearns said he never got the summons or two orders to show up before a judge that a deputy sheriff said in court filings were delivered to him. ******* County Sheriff Mark Shepherd couldn't be reached for comment. Mark Herr, an AIG spokesman, declined to comment on Mr. Stearns but said the lending unit was sold in November.
It's not the debt that is landing people in prison. It is when they fail to show up in court or end up in contempt. It appears debt collecting agencies are using this to pressure people in paying their debts by using the courts instead of sending around thugs to take some thumbs.