Woman talking(L+r), Rent a center logo(c)

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‘I still owe and nothing was done yet’: Woman buys furniture from Rent-A-Center. Then they send her to jail for 2 weeks

‘I am still suffering from Rent-a-Center.’

 

Stacy Fernandez

Trending

This woman sat in jail for weeks over some Rent-a-Center furniture. Twelve years later, she’s still dealing with them.

Rent-a-Center is a company that offers rent-to-own products, including furniture, appliances, and electronics. Akin to leasing a car, Rent-a-Center customers rent items and have the option to buy them outright after a period of time.

Rent-a-Center has been repeatedly called out for predatory and exploitative behavior. The overall cost to rent or own an item through them is high (often higher than retail), their contracts are known to be confusing, and they have aggressive collections practices.

On top of this, the company specifically targets financially vulnerable, low-income people with limited financing options, keeping many in a cycle of debt due to high costs and interest rates.

Rent-a-Center under fire

Last year, Rent-a-Center agreed to pay a nearly $9 million settlement over allegations of abusive debt collection tactics like filing criminal theft reports against people who missed payments, excessive calls, and popping up on customers at their homes with no prior notification to repossess their items, Top Class Actions reported.

Here’s the story of one person who ended up in jail because of Rent-a-Center and is still dealing with financial repercussions more than a decade later.

“I got furniture from Rent-a-Center when I was 19. I am 31, and I am still suffering from Rent-a-Center,” Raven Samone Dixon (@zootywitdabooty) says in a trending TikTok clip.

In a three-part TikTok series, Dixon explains that when she was 18 years old going on 19, she moved into a cheap apartment with her young child, and the only furniture they had in the entire house was a racecar bed for her son. In her room, she just had a mattress on the floor.

When she got her first paycheck from her convenience store job, Dixon used it to get some basic furniture in the house—a couch, dining room table, bedframe, dresser, and two TVs—from Rent-a-Center.

But one day she got a call from her ex telling her Rent-a-Center is in her house repossessing her furniture. See, that same ex had kicked in her door and it no longer closed, so it seems Rent-a-Center saw the easy entry point and just walked in.

According to a consumer protection lawyer, Rent-a-Center can’t just come into your home and take back their stuff. At most, they can stand outside of your door and threaten you with legal action, “but they are not going to be able to do anything until/unless you let them in.”

If they do go in without your permission, you can call the police and let them know that someone is trespassing.

By the time her ex saw the Rent-a-Center people and yelled at them to get out, they’d already gotten the pillows to the back of the couch, some dining room chairs, the dresser, and TVs.

“When I get there I am heated,” Dixon recalls. “Rent-a-Center, y’all had no business in my house. Y’all were not supposed to come in my house.”

A couple of months later, Dixon moved to another apartment, and instead of telling Rent-a-Center to pickup the rest of their stuff when she moved, she put it all out on the curb.

“I didn’t think to call Rent-a-Center and give them they [expletive],” Dixon said. “That was mistake No. 1.”

Later on, she found out that Rent-a-Center put a warrant out for her arrest, but Dixon, who says she’s “scheming and scamming,” has a nonchalant attitude about it.

“If they catch me, they catch me,” Dixon says, adding that during that time in her life, she was in and out of jail.

And they did.

During a traffic stop, she and her friend got pulled over and taken to jail since they both had warrants out. Hers? A felony warrant for removal of rental property.

In the past, Dixon didn’t have to serve much jail time since she was able to get out on bond, but she alleges that Rent-a-Center pulled some strings so that she would be held without bond.

They also gave her a condition saying Rent-a-Center would drop the charge from a felony to a misdemeanor if she paid what she owed them. Misdemeanors are a less serious charge than a felony and usually mandate a year or less of jail time, while a felony is anywhere from a year to life in prison, according to a law site.

Dixon sat in jail for two weeks until someone came and showed proof of payment.

Now, at least four years later, Rent-a-Center is still a menace in Dixon’s life.

Dixon, who got a stable job, recently noticed that Rent-a-Center and another company were garnishing her wages. Rent-a-Center was trying to charge her $3,700 even though she’d paid them in full years ago.

They didn’t have a payment record on file, and when Dixon reached out to her lawyer about the Rent-a-Center case, he said he no longer had the paperwork from her file, which would have included the Rent-a-Center receipt.

“Guess who ain’t going to work no more? Me. I’m not about to be working for y’all to take my check,” Dixon said.

@zootywitdabooty #fypage #viral #rentacenter #explore ♬ original sound – Raven Samone Dixon

“They take 25%, Grand Furinture take 25%, and Uncle Sam?! And all of this was from back when I was [a teenager]? No,” Dixon says decidedly.

The Daily Dot reached out to Dixon for comment via Instagram and TikTok direct message and to Rent-a-Center via contact form.

 
The Daily Dot