A Metairie, Louisiana, businessman was recently held in contempt of court by the state attorney general's office after violating a court order that prevented him, his son and another employee at the debt collection
agencies where they worked from continuing to operate accounts receivable management businesses, according to the Times-Picayune.
In December 2009, William S. Ferguson II and his son, Jason, were ordered to cease operations in their Baton Rouge-based debt collection company, Bush & Kennedy, after being accused of failing to remit payments to their clients. The company was subsequently shut down, but Ferguson went on to continue the practices at several other collections firms, including Metairie-based Franklin, Grant & Associates and Kenner-based Vincent Sharp & Associates, according to the news source. The recently issued injunction prohibits the father and son team from operating any debt collection agencies. According to the Federal Trade Commission, customer complaints about debt collectors rose by 17 percent in 2010. The newly created Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a federal watchdog agency that was established in 2010 as part of the Dodd-Frank Act, will put debt collection agencies under an increased level of scrutiny in order to ensure that they are complying with the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.