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ITGeek

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  1. I previously faxed them 2 response letters (1st was form letter from SSA) to their letters about collecting on a debt. It basically says my only income is from SSA and exempt from debt collection (excepts being taxes, child support or student loan). The 2nd response letter I reminded them of my 1st response letter and stop harassing me or I'd file a complaint. A month later they filed the lawsuit. Funny thing is going to be if they fork out more money pursuing it and find out they won't be able to collect a dime. In fact, they could find themselves owing me legal fees, travel costs and fines by State of CA if they want to continue the full-court (pun intended) press.
  2. Thank you everyone for your support and advice. I did contact the collection agency twice (Aug and Oct 2018) in response to their demand payment letters. I used the SS form letter from their web site to notify the collection agency my only income is SS, which is exempt from collection, wage garnishment or freezing bank account (none of the exemptions apply). They ignored it and filed a lawsuit against me in the San Francisco Superior Court. I don't know why they would do that after I responded to them twice with the SSA's own form letter. Yet they still filed a case, which is currently at the "Proof of Service" phase. Since they don't know I'm a foreign resident (3 years now), they have to follow Geneva law process for serving papers. They have until May 28th to show the court "Proof of Service", then they could petition judge to post notice in local newspaper or in the courthouse. I don't want to change anything, but if they file the latter, then I must respond to the court summons. So it's something I can't ignore and it will go away. Last thing I want is my US bank account frozen. In my last response letter to the collection agency, I also showed them proof my only income is SS and to cease and desist any further action or I'd be forced to file a counter-suit against them. I'll just have to keep checking the court case status and go from there. If petitioner is granted "Public Notice of Summons", then I'll have to respond to the court and will notify them of my status and hopefully they will drop the case. Believe me, changing my Direct Deposit to BDO is the last thing I want to do. I haven't contacted collection agency since my last response in Oct 2018, but yet they filed suit against me in Nov 2018. That is just harassment and them being a law firm should know better. If it comes to it, I'll file complaint with State of California Consumer Affair and State Bar against the attorney. They should know better. I'll keep you updated, until then, I'm keeping my fingers crossed they figure out it's not worth their effort and money trying to squeeze blood out of a rock.
  3. I currently have my SS benefits direct deposited to my Wells Fargo account in the US. I also use my "Traveling Mailbox" address in San Francisco for my US mailing address. I then wire money (online) to BDO joint checking account from my Wells Fargo. My dependent's SS benefits is already setup at BDO with my wife listed as "Payee" and son as "Beneficiary". Each month, she must go to the same branch to xfer money from dependent's BDO account (passbook account) into our BDO joint checking account. This is such a pain, since BDO requires it must be the exact branch in person for any transactions. No online access or other branch as an option. Now I received letter at my US mailbox that Wells Fargo is suing me for past due credit card account at San Francisco Superior Court. They have until May 28th to serve me papers. I previously sent them 2 response letters in Aug and Oct 2018 notifying them my only income is from SS. SS has a form letter for such a situation stating SS benefits are exempt from account freezes or garnishment. The only exceptions are child support, taxes or student loans. I have none of the above. Yet they (collection agency representing Wells Fargo) continue to pursue collection by filing lawsuit. It's $4,500 USD plus legal fees, which I can't afford to pay back. I did not have any income in 2017 while my SSDI benefits were being processed. My benefits are just enough to life month to month and save about $200 USD towards my children's education (dependent's account). They (collection agency and bank) think my residency is in San Francisco because of my US mailbox address listed for all US businesses. I'm a permanent resident of Philippines (unknown to them) so that makes serving me papers difficult. However, my sister (para-legal) said they can petition the court to publish notice in news paper or in court bulletin board in lieu of physical notice of service. Long story short, my father advised that I simply change my direct deposit to bank here in the Philippines. I'm now running into same problem as happened with my dependent's account. BDO requires that direct deposit account (USD) must be passbook account and that I must go to the exact branch to conduct any transactions. In addition, they can't link the account with my joint checking account (PHP). This is extremely inconvenient and if an emergency occurs or I must travel to the US, I won't be able to access those funds. I have a US based credit card, with $2,500 limit. That is only option in my current situation should I require access to emergency funds. Has anyone else run into this problem or could offer a solution? I'm living month to month and can't afford any delays in receiving benefits. BTW - Off topic, my wife told me a family friend who is OFW (Canada) came here to file police report because 1M PHP is missing from her BDO account (wired from overseas). It was obviously an inside job. I'm always diligent with my bank accounts and credit cards to make sure there are no unauthorized transactions every month. Thanks!
  4. Update to my application. I received a text message on Sept 25th from the Main BI office notifying me that my ACR-I card was being sent via 2GO to the Clark (Marque Mall) BI office. So it only took 5-6 weeks for them to process and approve. I'll be travelling to the Clark BI office next week to pick it up. I'm hoping they open the BI extension office in Palayan by end of this year. That way I won't have to travel so far to pay my Annual Report fee.
  5. Marked in bold the key statements in the news report. Looks like Codilla needs to immediately resign or at least be charged with criminal negligence. So the government agency that oversees mining operations doesn't blame it on mining activities, but a "natural phenomenon"? The government agency then failed its due diligence in identifying "natural phenomenon" (seismic fracture/fault zone?) before approving mining permit. They obviously did not perform a seismic survey of the area before approving permits. The NBI should investigate Codilla's bank records, I suspect there may be some extra money in the accounts.
  6. I know that illegal quarries have been a big political issue, filled with the usual corruption including assassinations. This has happened here in my province, Nueva Ecija this year. Plenty of limestone and sand available in the Spratley's, Mischief and Fiery reefs. Oh wait, D30 and Obama were President Xi's lapdogs until Trump took office. Now D30 is regretting his mistake and the Chinese are becoming more belligerent.
  7. Some good news to report. The forming typhoon, currently a tropical depression (TD28W) is forecast to track well away from the Philippines.
  8. I've attached a video I mde usingfrom the GFS model from the "Ventusky" app. It shows a strong Typhoon developing by middle to late next week and tracking Northwest of Philippines. However, the ICON model shows a more Westerly track towards Luzon. GFS Model 92W_Medium.mp4
  9. We were fortunate here in Cabanatuan, Nueva Ecija. The PDRRMO that I've volunteered with is currently assisting with recovery operations from landslides (lahars) in Itogon, Benguet. I've been getting updates from the PDRRMO Nueva Ecija manager and NDRRMC offices. I've sent emails out to my former colleagues asking if they know of any surplus Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) equipment that could be donated and train the rescue staff. I previously volunteered in California for SAR with local law enforcement, Civil Air Patrol and the California OES. I also previously worked with equipment that was used for urban rescue operations. I'm hoping that I can prepare them for the next earthquake or lahar where time is critical in rescue ops. My wife's families homes in Talavera were spared the worst of flooding along the Talavera River. Flood waters literally were only one street away from her family home we've been renovating. Down the Pampanga River valley, many roads are still impassable and areas flooded near Tarlac. My prayers are with the rescue workers who still are holding out hope they can recover some victims alive in Benguet. However, it's really a recovery ops at this point. It can take a toll on rescue workers, but at least they could give some closure to the families who have missing loved ones. BTW - The US Navy's Joint Typhoon Warning Center has reported another storm forming in same area that Super Typhoon Mangkhut (Ompong) did. It's presently just South of Guam and forecast (using GFS and ICON models) to rapidly intensify into a Typhoon with the next 48-72 hrs. It's tracking West-Northwest, just hoping it's more Northwest and misses the Philippines.
  10. I've been following the storm closely on the USN Typhoon Warning web site. It will enter the PAR sometime late Wednesday evening and continue to intensify. It's current path shows it will make landfall in Northern Luzon/Batanes on Saturday. Although its max sustained winds will reach 150 kts, it forecast to weaken as it approaches Philippines. I've volunteered with the PDRRMO here in Nueva Ecija and they've already held meeting to discuss their disaster plans for the province. It appears Illocos Norte, Cagayan and Batanes will take the brunt of the storm. They are expecting Signal No 1 here in Nueva Ecija, Signal 2/3 in Illocos Norte and Cagayan. Now is the time to prepare. Hope everyone stays safe.
  11. When my wife tried to open the account, the branch manager told her that if she were to become deceased, the money would be held in the account until our son is 18 yo and then he would be able to access it. This is exactly the reason I wanted access to the account. So I contacted the SSA Office at USEM and informed them, what happens if my spouse dies, since she is the payee how do I access my son's benefits. SSA states that children beneficiaries are prohibited from accessing their account. I was also told that I would have to go to the SSA at USEM and they will provide necessary paperwork for me to become the payee for my son. I hope it never comes to that, I can just imagine the amount of paperwork and approvals required.
  12. I was recently at the SSA office at USEM to apply for SSDI dependent benefits. The SSA has my wife listed as the "Payee" and our 2 yo son as the "Beneficiary". I understand the child is not allowed access to the account. My only concern is if my wife dies, how would I gain access my son's funds. They say, "It's Philippine Law" that the surviving spouse automatically is granted access. However, I don't have anything in writing that states that. I would prefer to have a joint account with my wife so either of us can access the funds.
  13. I'm sorry you feel that way. I started working at the age of 16, delivering newspapers before school and as a janitor after school. I was blessed at the time of going to university that the personal computer boom was just starting in the mid 1980's. I even switched majors to get my BSCS, at that time one was either a Electrical Engineer or Software Engineer. I was also working full-time and going to school at night. I worked hard and paid into SSA for 36 years before my illness ended my career.
  14. My son is 2, so naturally I think it's the "terrible twos". He can have bad temper tantrums compared to most kids. He mostly cries and screams loud, sometimes hits or throws things. I think his Pediatrician (along with everyone else in the hospital could hear his loud crying. But then, he is also sick so of course he was feeling miserable. When we looked at his "Health Book", we noticed the nurse put his age at 3 instead of 2. So my guess is the Pediatrician thought he was 3, especially since he is big for his age compared to other kids here. That's why she probably thought his vocabulary and responses were below a 3 yo. Last night, I spoke with my sister who is an RN in the SF Bay Area about my son. Like you, she said it's normal for young kids to get 5 or 6 colds per year because of their developing immunity system. As far as the asthma, my sister has it and the Bay Area/Sacramento Valley have poor air quality (especially with all the wildfires). I agree with your statement regarding ADHD. When we were kids, we played outside, running around and riding bikes. Today's kids (and most adults) are more interested looking their smart phones (very bad on eyes) than normal playing. Thanks for the advice, as I said in my earlier post, I think once we live around my wife's family house, he will pickup more Tagalog playing with his cousins and other kids in the Brgy.
  15. This is kind of related to same topic. Today, we had to take my 2 yo son to his Pediatrician due to sore throat and fever. She mentioned he also has mild asthma, but was most concerned he may have ADHD and require therapy because of his behavior. Since he's been learning in English on Youtube (along with both my spouse and myself), I'm wondering if it's a language barrier. He knows "ate", "nanay" (lola) and "tito". When pamilya is here at night they speak only in Tagalog. I'm hoping once we move to my wife's family house, he will pickup Tagalog from his cousins who are around same age. Any thoughts?
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