The Fair Debt Collection Practice Act (FDCPA) is legislation that was originally passed in 1966 as a way to protect consumers from harassment from debt collectors and debt collection agencies. In 2006, the law was amended as part of the Financial Services Regulatory Relief Act in order to stay up to date with the practices that many collectors have begun using in the modern, digital era. However, the Act only applies to private consumers (NOT businesses). Also, there are only certain types of debts that are covered under this legislation. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the types of debt to which the FDCPA applies include:
- In general, all personal and family/household debts
- Mortgage payments
- Personal medical debt
- Credit card debt
Personal and family debts include other expenses like student loan payments, car payments, etc.
If you have experienced harassment due to illegal and overly aggressive tactics from debt collectors, you might be eligible for legal recourse. Depending on the facts of your case, an attorney with Sue the Collector might be able to get you significant compensation for the harm you experienced. Get in touch with Sue the Collector to learn more about your potential compensation during a FREE consultation today. Call us at (866) 768-6005 or fill out the form on our contact page and a representative will respond as soon as possible.
Understanding the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
As long as the debt you owe is personal in nature rather than related to business transactions, it should fall under the FDCPA protections. There are several key sections of the law that limit what a collector can do when seeking payment from you for any such debt you owe.
Harassment from debt collectors in the past has involved phone calls at all hours of the night, disturbing debtors’ sleep cycles and causing both psychological and, in some cases, physical harm. Under the FDCPA, debt collectors are forbidden from contacting you:
- At any time BEFORE 8:00 in the morning (in your time zone), and
- At any time AFTER 9:00 at night (in your time zone).
Furthermore, they are not supposed to call you at times they know are inconvenient for you, such as during work hours.
Defining Harassment Behaviors
A debt collector is legally required to abstain from harassing either you or anyone else related to you or your debt situation. While they are allowed to contact you about the debt during unrestricted hours, they are not supposed to engage in any of the following actions:
- Humiliating or embarrassing you
- Swearing at or using derogatory language with you
- Calling your workplace if they know you are not allowed to receive personal calls
- Lie or present false information about your debt or potential consequences
Threats of violence are also forbidden, as these constitute verbal assault in many cases. If the debt collector is aware of your contact and location information, they are also restricted from contacting coworkers, family members, and friends of yours to inquire about how to reach you. This can be seen as a form of public humiliation over the debt.
When Debt Collectors Must Stop Contacting You
The law also sets up avenues by which you can stop the debt collector or collection agency from contacting you. If, for example, you issue a statement in writing requesting for the debt collector to cease calling or emailing you about the debt issue, they must stop. Note, however, that they can still pursue legal action against you in pursuit of compensation for the debt. This simply means that they must stop contacting you personally over the matter.
Additionally, the collector is required to go through your attorney if they are made aware that you have a lawyer handling your debt problem.
Since some of the legislation’s language is tricky and requires the debt collector to have knowledge about your circumstances (such as being represented by an attorney or law firm), you may find it difficult to hold the collector accountable. That is where Sue the Collector comes in.
How Sue the Collector Can Help You Protect Yourself
Sue the Collector is a group that is dedicated to helping consumers escape the nightmare of debt collection practices. We can provide an attorney to you for FREE if you qualify for our assistance, and many of our clients have received as much as:
- $1,000 for debt collection harassment
- $1,500 for each robocall that is illegally sent
The attorneys in our group are passionate about consumer protections and will fight aggressively and determinedly for your rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
Qualifying for Assistance
To qualify for our help, you need to have experienced at least one of the illegal debt collection practices listed above. Other behaviors that might qualify you include situations when the collector lies about legal escalation (such as saying things like “we’ll let our attorneys know you have not cooperated with us”), or when they tack on additional fees to your debt (such as late or inconvenience fees, collection fees, etc.).
Get Help from Sue the Collector Today
If you believe that you have been unfairly targeted with illegal debt collection harassment tactics, you might be entitled to receive significant compensation. Call the offices of Sue the Collector at (866) 768-6005 or fill out the email form on our contact page with the details of your situation and one of our agents will be in touch with you shortly.