Mike McGloon, Litigation and Skiptrace Manager of Brown & Joseph, discusses lawsuits, special investigations and how Brown & Joseph manages to litigate on less than 1% of all cases.
Tell me a little about yourself and your professional background.
My professional career actually started in the mortgage business in the late 90s.
We had a pretty good run there for a while, and I moved from the mortgage business into the private investigative side of things – first at street-level PI work, then more and more for banks on investigating bad loans and frauds, so I have about 10 years of experience in that arena before I came here to Brown & Joseph.
You have a unique role in overseeing the Special Investigation Unit and Litigation. There seems to be a synergy between the data/information gathering on pending legal cases. How have you managed to integrate the two departments to evaluate the cases in your recommendation to clients on whether or not to sue?
So, in our asset location and investigation department, we’ve been able to implement some incredible processes to ensure that our collectors have all the best data and information available.
We utilize everything from electronic data scrubbing and data cleaning, right down to good, old-fashioned detective work on an individual case-by-case basis where it’s needed.
We’ve been able to basically apply that model and those methods to the litigation department now to all aspects of the cases in the litigation department, from our initial review of an account through post-judgment recovery efforts.
You litigate on less than 1% of all cases placed for collection, which is considerably lower than industry standards. Can you explain how you accomplish this?
The number is probably way lower than 1%. The biggest factor on why we litigate on so few accounts here is because of the processes that our production and collectors go through to liquidate such a higher percentage of portfolios than our competitors.
Beyond that, by the time it gets to our litigation department, again, we have some processes that we go through to eliminate the accounts that we don’t feel are litigation-worthy, either because the debtor is not viable or we feel that it could expose our client to too much risk moving forward.
What is the biggest misconception creditors have when filing suit?
I think the biggest misunderstanding is the amount of time everything is going to take. Once it moves into the legal arena, a lot of it is deliberately slow on our end.
We want to make sure that we have the best available information, we want to make sure that we’re advancing a file forward into a legal arena that is qualified to be there, and that we know will be successful.
We also have a lot of backlog in our court system that affects how long it takes things to get done.
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