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Late fees on video rentals prompt Montana lawsuit

Wed., Jan. 26, 2011, 1:30 p.m.

HELENA — Montanans who didn’t return that copy of “Ghostbusters” before Hollywood Video and Movie Gallery closed their doors for good may now find a black mark on their credit reports.

Attorney General Steve Bullock says a debt collection agency filed negative reports to credit agencies for more than 12,000 people who owed late fees when the video rental stores’ parent company went bankrupt last year.

The state filed a lawsuit Wednesday against National Credit Solutions, alleging that the company engaged in unfair and deceptive debt collection practices.

The lawsuit claims the collection agency sent the negative reports without notifying customers and then demanded exorbitant fees on top of what was owed.

A message left at the company’s Oklahoma-based offices was not immediately returned.

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