The debt activism group Strike Debt has given many people a happy holiday this year by buying their debt and erasing it.
These anti-debt collectors originally planned to raise $50,000 for their Rolling Jubilee Fund to buy medical debt on secondary debt markets and then wipe it out, reports VillageVoice.com.
However, the group got some media attention from the New York Times and Fortune Magazine, and ended up raising nearly half a million dollars, enough to buy about $10 million of debt.
Most of the money is going to purchase distressed medical debt next month, but Strike Debt already spent $5,000 to buy $100,000 of medical debt owed by 44 people in New York state.
Yesterday, the Strike Debt activists sent out the notifications to strangers with letters that begin with "Seasons Greetings from Strike Debt!" and say:
We write with good news: the above referenced account has been purchased by the Rolling Jubilee Fund, a 501(c)(4) non-profit organization. The Rolling Jubilee Fund is a project of Strike Debt. The mission of this project is to buy and abolish personal debt. We believe that no one should have to go into debt for the basic things in our lives, like healthcare, housing, and education.
You no longer owe the balance of this debt. It is gone, a gift with no strings attached. You are no longer any obligation to settle this account with the original creditor, the bill collector, or anyone else.