Our office hours are 8:00am CST – 5:00pm CST Monday – Friday.However, web payments and wire transfers are available twenty-four seven (24/7) and we are available earlier in the mornings and later in the evenings based on customer time zone differences.
If you have any questions pertaining to the status of your accounts, or have any other question, concern, or issue, please call or email our client services department at 847-259-7000 x 115 or firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition, please notify our client services department in writing if a direct payment is sent to your office. We will then update your account accordingly.
We can accept claims in any matter that you would like to send them.Specifically, we are able to receive accounts on an individual basis through email, facsimile, or our website.Multiple, simultaneous placements (aka: batch assignments) are either sent to us via email, through a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet, or we connect to our client’s FTP website, or remotely connect to their system, and extract a file compatible with Microsoft Excel that lists all assigned accounts for that particular day.
AFM attempts to collect the monies owed on an assigned account on a contingency fee basis.Please see AFM’s Published Rate Schedule which, in addition to describing AFM’s pre-litigation contingency fee rates, also describes AFM’s fees in atypical situations such as erroneous placements and account cancellations (aka: withdrawal fees), payments before placement (aka: discovery fees), the assignment of non-sufficient funds (NSF) checks, consumer accounts, second placements, international accounts, litigation forwardings, etc.Please review AFM’s Published Rate Schedule and contact your AFM Sales Rep if you have any questions with respect to our fees.
We utilize the collection software of the industry leader, Columbia Ultimate Business Systems (CUBS). CUBS is SAS 70 certified and is also certified in accordance with the Statement on Standards for Attestation Engagements No. 16 (SSAE 16) Type II, meaning that the software is consistently tested and aligns with the top standards in data security. In addition, all data transfers are completed through encrypted software.
Yes, AFM is licensed and bonded. AFM is licensed in all 50 states and is a founding member of the Commercial Collection Agencies of America Association (CCAofA). Through the CCAofA, we have a $300,000 surety bond for the benefit of our clients.
AFM’s Attorney Intervention Collection Program (aka: Immediate Collection) provides a stronger collection and adds enormous value to your collection efforts. From the very first day that we receive a new account for collection, an in-house AFM Attorney will directly work your file and contact the debtor to obtain immediate, voluntary payment on a contingency fee basis. If we do not collect the monies owed to you, then we do not earn a fee. Our lawyers do not litigate. Rather, they solely focus on collection and account resolution by phone, email, facsimile and postal mail. AFM handles each assigned claim with professionalism, the utmost care and decisive action. We attempt to work each new file every single day for three straight days after we receive a new assignment to immediately, directly communicate with the debtor, incite urgency and collect the monies due as quick as possible. The immediate attorney involvement alone subconsciously creates a sense of urgency, so our immediate, persistent and respectful collection pursuits elicit a quicker response and payment. Further, the immediate attorney involvement provides a stronger likelihood to increase the quality of your claim (e.g. obtain a personal guaranty, promissory note, confession of judgment), while we collect the monies owed on your behalf. Also, if necessary, it sets the foundation for a comprehensive investigation to locate the obligor and learn the obligor’s payment capabilities. This will help you make an informed decision when responding to a settlement offer or when deciding whether to forward a claim to local counsel for possible legal action.
AFM offers a Free Demand Letter Series Program on commercial accounts that exceed $300.00. Specifically, AFM can send your delinquent customers final demand letters, covering a period of 10, 20, or 30-days, at absolutely no charge to you. AFM’s Free Demand program allows you to separate your customers that are truly customers from your past customers that are debtors and belong in collections. If you already know a past customer is a debtor, then AFM’s Attorney Intervention Collection Program (aka: Immediate Collection) will provide you with the most leverage and highest collection probability. From our experience, files involving a customer dispute, severe financial distress, or an opposing attorney are best served by immediate placement into AFM’s Immediate Collection program. After you choose a time frame, every 10 days, on AFM Letterhead, AFM will send a demand letter to your customer that directs all communications and payments to your office. The language within each demand letter becomes more stringent as the free demand period progresses. If payment is made to you during the free demand period and you notify us in writing of the payment received, then there is no charge whatsoever for the monies collected. It is absolutely free. However, if you do not receive payment in full during the Free Demand period, the account’s remaining balance automatically transfers into Immediate Collection.
At no cost and with your prior, written authorization, AFM will report your debtors’ and guarantors’ unpaid account balances to the credit bureaus during the first week of the month after 30 days elapsed since you place an account with our office for collections. For example, if you assign a file to AFM for collections on January 15, 2019, AFM will report the debtor’s unpaid balance to the credit bureaus during the first week of March 2019. Once reported, the delinquent mark on the debtor’s credit report will appear as “American Financial Management” within the Significant Derogatory Data section. After the balance was initially reported, AFM will continue to report the up-to-date unpaid balance to the credit bureaus every month, for seven years, until the balance is paid in full. Your credit reporting authorization applies to all future assigned accounts, rather than on an individual account basis.
In order for AFM to report your debtor’s to the credit bureaus, please complete AFM’s Credit Bureau Authorization form and then send the signed form back to our office.AFM’s Credit Bureau Authorization form only needs to be submitted one time, as it will apply to all accounts assigned to our office after we have the signed form on record.
Upon submitting your first collection account, you receive access to AFM’s online client portal (Client Web Access), which is accessible through our website. AFM’s Client Web Access, which is available 24/7, allows you to review all notes, the status and payment history for every account assigned to our office. Moreover, you will be able to view and download many different cumulative reports, such as History, Inventory and Payment Reports. Every report is downloadable in Excel, Word, PDF, CSV or Tab-Delimited.
While AFM does not file the actual lawsuits, AFM has built relationships with attorneys throughout the world to assist your litigation needs. We will only forward a file to a local attorney for potential suit after we receive your written authorization. After we receive your approval, we will forward the account to a local attorney that is a member of the Commercial Law League of America and is licensed, bonded and insured in accordance with the requirements of the association. Thereafter, all communications on the account forwarded to local counsel will involve yourself, AFM and local counsel, together, in one email chain, to ensure we work as a team to get the best result possible. Your local attorney, through AFM, will request monies to cover court costs, which vary based on the jurisdiction, the type and dollar size of your claim. Once legal proceedings conclude, local counsel will provide an accounting of all outlaid court costs.
Yes, AFM maintains a partnership with Experian to provide clients with the analytical tools necessary to manage business risk and maximize profits. Experian products can assist in acquiring creditworthy new customers, monitoring how customers are meeting their financial obligations to the business community and timely identifying customers’ deteriorating financial conditions, allowing you to make informed, decisive decisions to minimize losses.
Yes, AFM could contact your customers, as your company, to ensure your customers timely pay invoices and are educated on their payment terms. We can reduce your internal operating costs, while we improve results and grow customer relationships, especially in high volume environments. Our current and recent projects include: assisting a client with first party collections on the client’s computer, telephone and email system from AFM’s office location, sending a customized first-party letter series, performing credit granting activities through Experian and by reviewing and processing Credit Applications and auditing accounts previously closed by a different third-party collection vendor.
Your debtors will be contacted through AFM’s Attorney Intervention Collection Program. If any debtors contact you directly on the accounts that are now in collections, in order to ensure that we maintain our leverage in resolving your matters, please refer these past customer, now debtors, to our collection group at 847-259-4700.
Check, credit card and wire. With respect to submitting payment by check, we can accept physical checks by postal mail or check copies, which we will electronically deposit, by phone, facsimile or email.
AFM can remit collected monies on a per-transaction or on a monthly basis.We typically remit monies on a per-transaction NET basis, however we do have clients that desire monthly NET remittances, along with a remittance statement of invoice.Remittance payments can be sent via wire, ACH, by check to a lockbox or to a physical address.Here is specific detail regarding our per-transaction NET remittance processes:
When we receive a direct payment from the debtor, the check is immediately deposited into our trust account. For clients on a per-transaction, NET remittance basis, we will then remit payment to you, minus our contingency fee, after the check has cleared the debtor’s bank account. If a check comes back non-sufficient funds (NSF), 99% of the time we receive notice within 7 business days after the check is deposited. On the 8th business day, if we have not received any notification from our bank, we assume that the check cleared and remit payment to you on the Friday of the following week. Therefore, you should receive the payment from our office between 21 – 28 days after we secure payment from the debtor.
With respect to providing updates on an individual account basis, there are two different options, with variations of each option.
The first option is AFM sending an initial status report on each account placed after the first time the account is worked.Thereafter, AFM will send additional status reports every two (2) to four (4) weeks, regardless of if there is a substantive update (i.e. settlement offer, dispute, direct payment verification, receipt of a non-sufficient funds check, bankruptcy notification) that requires AFM’s client’s direction.After sixty (60) to ninety (90) days that AFM has assisted on the account, AFM will provide an overall recommendation on the file going forward (i.e. continue to allow AFM to work the account, consider filing a lawsuit, or close as uncollectible).When appropriate, AFM will send a close-out letter on each account.
The second option is AFM providing status updates on an account only when a significant event arises in AFM’s collection efforts that must be disclosed and/or discussed with AFM’s client to assist in our handling of the particular file (i.e. settlement offer, dispute, direct payment verification, receipt of a non-sufficient funds check, bankruptcy notification).If desired, when appropriate, AFM can send an opening and/or closing letter on each account.
With regards to receiving a status update on all accounts in one report, if desired, AFM can send a Total or Active History Report to AFM’s client on a monthly basis.Please contact your AFM Sales Rep for specific details.
In addition, irrespective of the individual account status update option you desire and select, AFM’s client will receive full access to AFM’s Client Web Access, which will allow AFM’s client to view all up-to-date collection notes, the status and payment history for every account assigned to AFM.
This report, which is generated the same day that new accounts are entered into our collection software, provides a listing of accounts placed, the client reference number, our account number, and the dollar amount assigned.
Displays the accounts that we have secured monies on, the payment date, and the remittance amount.
Cancel and Return Report:
Lists accounts that have been removed from our active collection processes.This report lists the account name, date assigned, principal assigned, cancelled amount and our account number.
Inventory Report (Active and Total Inventories):
Discloses accounts placed with our firm and includes the client reference number, our reference number, account name, amount assigned, amount collected and status of each account. This report can be created for all active accounts or for all placed accounts and can also be generated in our online client portal and downloaded to your computer in numerous formats such as Excel, Word, PDF, CSV or Tab-Delimited.
This statistical report shows the quantity and dollar amounts of assignments, collections, and cancellations, by month, for the last twelve months as well as on an annual basis. This report can also be generated in our online client portal and downloaded to your computer in numerous formats such as Excel, Word, PDF, CSV or Tab-Delimited.
Credit Reporting Service Notification:
Displays the accounts that were reported to the Credit Bureaus for the designated month.
AFM will typically provide you with the option to file a lawsuit on assigned files that involve the following facts:
Principal amount owed is in excess of $7,500.00;
We have not received payment in full, a partial payment or a settlement offer, or the debtor breached an Agreement reached while the account is in collections and debtor communications are not progressing in your best interests;
Debtor business is open and operating;
Debtor does not have severe financial distress or many pending legal matters against them, especially if the cumulative total claimed within the pending legal matters far exceeds the balance owed to your company; and
Your claim is undisputed or the debtor’s dispute, in our opinion, does not have any merit and there is not a concern for a countersuit, as you will have to pay local counsel an hourly fee to defend the same.
Around 60 – 90 days after you assign a file to our office and after we made all possible collection attempts, if we have not secured payment in full, a partial payment or a settlement offer, and debtor communications are not progressing in your best interests, we will either close our file or provide you with the option to forward the file to local counsel for possible legal action. At times, forwarding the file to local counsel for possible legal action might be in your best interests.
Unless your contract has a venue provision and you disclose that you would like us to forward the matter to local counsel in the jurisdiction described within your contract, in order to expedite litigation proceedings and post-judgment execution in the most cost-efficient manner, we will typically forward the prior-authorized file for suit to local counsel in the debtor’s jurisdiction.Therefore, once a judgment becomes final, local counsel can immediately begin post-judgment execution and begin to initiate proceedings to locate, and attach the obtained judgment to, assets in order to satisfy the monies owed.
On the other hand, if a judgment is obtained in a jurisdiction that does not contain any debtor assets, in order to enforce this previously obtained judgment, a new lawsuit may be filed based on the judgment or, in the states that have adopted the Uniform Enforcement of Foreign Judgments Act, a foreign judgment may be registered by filing an exemplified copy of the foreign judgment with the appropriate office of the Court and notifying the debtor of the filing.
Thus, to avoid this additional step, which costs additional monies and time, we typically recommend filing suit in debtor’s domicile.
All communications on the account forwarded to local counsel will involve yourself, AFM and local counsel, together, in one email chain, to ensure we work as a team to get the best result possible. Once we forward the claim to the local attorney that will be filing suit on your behalf, the local attorney almost always sends a written demand letter to the debtor upon opening their file. The attorney will generally not file suit for at least 30 days during which time the attorney will conduct their own investigation. This is required practice for a consumer debt under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and most attorneys use it as their standard procedure, even for commercial accounts that do not fall under FDCPA. Therefore, for that reason, unless anything is needed beforehand, after you authorize AFM to forward an account to local counsel, you should advance its’ file 45 days to obtain the attorney’s litigation recommendation and, if applicable, the necessary affidavit and court costs’ to proceed with filing a lawsuit. Court costs vary based on the jurisdiction, the type and dollar size of your claim. Once legal proceedings conclude, local counsel will provide an accounting of all outlaid court costs.
Each situation varies depending on many factors.Unless a prior settlement is reached beforehand, at the absolute earliest, expect that it will take 6 months – a year to obtain a judgment and execution on the same could last much longer.
Upon learning of a bankruptcy filing, AFM will notify you of the learned filing, provide the applicable bankruptcy case information and typically close its’ file. However, on a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing, in which your claim exceeds $10,000.00, AFM can file a proof of claim and monitor the bankruptcy proceedings on your behalf.
I would highly recommend AFM if you are looking for a company that will collect on your doubtful accounts. I have been through many third party collection companies in the past, and they have delivered the best results thus far.
Michael Passo, Pella Windows and Doors
My experiences with AFM have been nothing but satisfying. Everyone that I have had the pleasure of dealing with has left me completely satisfied. The professionalism and commitment to service is second to none.
Tim Regrut, Liberty Roofing Center Inc.
AFM conducts their business in a conscientious manner and has always maintained Luster’s best interest. Litigation is done in a timely manner. Their representatives are true to their word and always follow through. I feel confident that our outsourced delinquent accounts are in the best hands. I highly recommend their many services!
L.D. Raney, Luster Products Inc.
I believe and trust that American Financial Management exhibits both tenacity and professionalism and am confident knowing that they uphold our professional name.
Brendalee Smith, Kieffer & Co., Inc.
I get calls regularly from collection companies that want us to give them a try. But when something is working this well I won’t change. You have made the collection process painless and rewarding.
Christine M. Russell, ZIPWALL
We are most impressed with the follow-up procedures conducted and the complete progress given on each case. We are kept informed of every step taken and AFM’s professional approach to collection does not necessarily jeopardize our client relationship. You will without a doubt be pleased with the outcome of their work.
Ron Herzog, President and CEO - F-O-R-T-U-N-E PERSONNEL CONSULTANTS
I have had a few businesses and have had some uncollectible accounts. AFM has been very excellent in helping me obtain the money owed to me. AFM is professional and informative. The client services department and attorney intervention staff are very good. I do not hesitate to refer AFM to other business owners.
John M. Reichert, President - Reichert Chevrolet & Buick Sales, Inc.
I have had the opportunity to use EXPERIAN via American Financial Management, Inc., for over a decade, and have found a very capable team of professionals who are available to assist you in all areas relating to EXPERIAN. AFM has access to highly experienced representatives of EXPERIAN and they will establish a personal, friendly, working relationship with you and will be able to answer any and all questions you may encounter with EXPERIAN or the EXPERIAN credit reports.
Terry D. Brown, Update Legal
When I need a total of an account in collections, through Client Web Access [Client Login], the information is right there for me to log in and get. I can pull information up while I have a collections account on the phone and tell them exactly what they owe.
Christy Brooks, United Notions
I have worked with AFM for the past 13 years and competitors have often tried to get me to switch. Competitors’ rates and expertise do not compare to AFM. Customer contact with AFM is outstanding and I would highly recommend them to others.
Leslie Butler, S-E-A, Ltd.
We have been doing business with AFM for over 17 years. In that time our company has tripled in size. During our transition period, we worked closely with AFM to ensure our accounts were set up properly and all of our questions were answered. They are always available to assist with any of our needs. I have enjoyed our business relationship and hope to continue for many years to come.
Rita McMahon, Charter Communications, Inc.
We have had much success in using American Financial Management for our collection needs and highly recommend them for yours.
Peggy M. Johnson, The Roy Houff Company
I only send accounts to AFM after thoroughly exhausting internal collection efforts. It is thus amazing that AFM has been able to collect anything for Reebie, but AFM has come through on numerous occasions. I would strongly recommend AFM to other companies that need help collecting on unpaid accounts.
Tim Deets, Reebie Storage & Moving Company, Inc.
You have done a wonderful job for us – everyone I talk to is very pleasant and helpful and I feel like I can call or e-mail anytime if I have questions or concerns about any of my accounts. Your attorneys and legal staff are absolutely wonderful to work with! I enjoy my conversations with them as it is informative and keeps me up to date on all proceedings and negotiations (not to mention they are just nice people). I look forward to our continued success in working together.
Carmen Thorne, Seacoast Medical
AFM has successfully collected a large number of our delinquent accounts. We even had an account that we considered a write off from four years ago that was paid because the customer could not buy a house with us on their credit report!
Gina Ames, Sub Zero Refrigeration, Inc.
I switched Coca-Cola to AFM in 2001 and have experienced wonderful service. AFM conducts their business in a professional and conscientious manner while achieving excellent results.
Gail Lyon, Coca-Cola Bottling Consolidated
We have complete confidence in their professionalism and determination to collect our outstanding debts. Their representatives have always been conscientious and thorough with every account we have placed with them. AFM has exceeded our expectations. We highly recommend their services to you.
Gigi Hollabough, National Metal Stampings, Inc.
We have been working with American Financial since 1992. We depend on them to collect on our really tough accounts. They have successfully returned money to us on several accounts that we considered to be lost causes.
Jane Heller, President, Heller Lumber Company
We have been working with American Financial since 1994. The reason we keep coming back is because of their attorney intervention program. It has been very successful in returning the money that is owed to us.
Chuck Lukavsky, Catching Fluid Power
American Financial Management is a superb company and I recommend that you consider them as your collection agency; you will be very pleased with the results they will achieve for you.
Renee Keck CBF, Wurth Baer Supply Company
AFM conducts their business in a conscientious manner and has maintained PBA Health’s best interests. We are timely notified when payments for bad debt are received. AFM then deposits the funds in their trust account, allow two weeks for the funds to clear and then they send the money to us. This eliminates any inconveniences that would occur if the check was returned by the bank.
Frances Gouldsmith, PBA Health, Inc.
American Financial has unquestionably been the most successful at collecting than any other collection agency that we have ever done business with. They are constantly keeping us updated with the latest progress with every account they are attempting to collect from and our experience with this prestige collection agency has been nothing shy of excellent.
Julie Zepeda, Impression Bridal
I appreciate the ease of filing new claims online, and I am particularly happy with the ‘30-day free demand’ for commercial accounts. I recommend American Financial to other businesses in need of collection services.
Lisa Beck, Bouchard Cleaning & Restoration, Inc.
We highly recommend using American Financial Management as your preferred 3rd party when you need to outsource an account for collection assistance. Not only are they very successful in collecting the monies owed to us, they are constantly keeping us updated with the latest progress of every account they are attempting to collect on. American Financial Management has unquestionably been the most successful at collecting than any other collection agency that we have ever done business with. Just as important to us has been the strong relieving trust that has grown between AFM and ourselves. In addition, a great friendship and relationship has also transpired.
Janet Nettle and Carol Soper, Knapheide Truck Equipment
During my over 15 years in Accounting, I’ve had the opportunity to work with many third party Collection Agencies. I will say that American Financial Management has been the best. It is not just their success in the collection rate, but their entire service that has been provided making it an easy and wonderful experience.
Robert J. McMillian, Amrep, Inc.
The fact that you have been able to recover what you have to date is fantastic. Your plan below, when executed (and we have every confidence it will be) moves this matter into the EXCEPTIONAL category. Great work.