Defending Against Crown Asset Management in NY & NJ

Crown Asset Management is a debt buyer that has been around for a long time but who recently seems to be emerging as a handler of many more debt collection and judgment enforcement matters in both New York and New Jersey. Crown Asset most frequently retains Stephen Einstein and Associates, a common debt collection law firm in New York and more recently in New Jersey. Stephen Einstein took over a very large portfolio of debt like the Crown Asset cases from Mel S Harris, an old problematic debt collection law firm that they acquired years ago. Stephen Einstein regularly collects on these Crown Asset matters in the pre-litigation collection phase followed by suing consumers and then usually obtaining default judgments against consumers. These judgments allow them to levy bank accounts, garnish wages and place liens on real property.

The first and most important step to protect against Crown Asset Management and Stephen Einstein is to submit an answer once a lawsuit or summons and complaint is received. Unfortunately, service of process is notoriously bad in New York, so consumers are not served in many cases. It is important to immediately move to vacate the default judgment once learned about as a consumer generally has one year to vacate once they find out about the judgment based on CPLR 5015. There are some other ways that this can be done but it is always best to file an order to show cause immediately, so a judge does not ask why it took so long to do so. It is important to request proof of the bill of sale and assignment of the debt from Stephen Einstein so you can see whether Crown Asset can meet their burden to prove that they are the rightful owner of the debt. If they cannot meet their burden, then the debt must be dismissed. Often this falls into a gray area which means that a consumer can always use this sort of leverage to settle a debt matter for substantially less than the full balance.
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