Surviving Debt Collection: Leveraging the FDCPA
Handling your financial obligations is stressful enough, but what happens when malicious creditors make it even worse? Although creditor harassment is a sad reality for many debtors, there are explicit laws that prohibit such behaviors.
The landmark Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, or FDCPA, expressly forbids certain collection actions, and consumers continue to rely on it to this day. Learn more below, or contact Royal Legal Group for a case evaluation now.
What Is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act?
The FDCPA is a 1977 amendment to the Consumer Credit Protection Act. Its purpose is to regulate the behaviors and activities of any company or entity that engages in debt collection as its primary business. Many states also apply their own debt collection rules to creditors.
According to this law, those who attempt to collect debts are prohibited from performing a number of actions that are defined as abusive or deceptive, such as:
- Tricking you into thinking that they’re attorneys or law enforcement personnel,
- Publishing your identifying information on a list of bad debt,
- Contacting you during inconvenient hours,
- Trying to add false records to your credit report or threatening you with such actions,
- Talking to third parties other than your legal representative or spouse about your debt,
- Threatening you with the prospect of lawsuits, arrests or other legal action,
- Annoying or harassing you by continually making your phone ring, and
- Not stopping communications with you after you send written notice that you don’t want to talk to them.
Have Your Rights Been Violated?
The vast majority of Americans have dealt with debts at some point in their lives. Although many of these financial burdens were resolved without major incidents, consumers who interacted with creditors might tell a different story. Being harassed makes it extremely difficult to repay your debts, subjects you to unfair stress and may even cause you to pursue inadvisable financial actions simply to obtain relief.
In addition to defining what collectors can and can’t do, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act also provides mechanisms for consumers to seek restitution. If you’ve been abused by collection agencies or personnel, you may be eligible for statutory damages and legal fees, but it all depends on whether you file your lawsuit correctly. Get in touch with Royal Legal Group for your free case evaluation now.