What Do I Do About Abusive Debt Collectors?
Debt Collectors Do NOT Play By the Rules
When you owe a debt, whether it’s a credit card or some other type of debt, you are protected from harassment by a broad series of powerful laws:
- FDCPA (Fair Debt Collection Practices Act)
- FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act)
- RFDCPA (In California: Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act)
- UDAP (Unlawful & Deceptive Acts & Practices)
There are more, but these four are the big guns in any debt defense attorney’s bag of tricks. If you’re being sued by a debt collector, you should call right now for a free consultation with a Debt Collection Attorney.
What do the collectors do? I have had clients (within the last month or two) tell me that collectors have done each of the following. Each of these is a violation of federal or state law, and each is actionable by a good debt collection attorney, who will help you Report Collection Abuse.
Are Collectors Calling Family or Friends? Report Debt Collector Abuse right now. Your FDCPA attorney will help.Bill Collector Harassment at Work? Call Debt Collection Attorney Eric Ridley for a free consultation.
Your Debt Collection FDCPA Attorney will Explain That: Debt Collectors CANNOT:
1. Ask you to pay more than you owe
The collector cannot misrepresent the amount you owe. [15 USC 1692e] § 807(2)(a)
2. Ask you to pay interest, fees, or expenses that are not allowed by law
The collector can’t add on any extra fees that your original credit or loan agreement doesn’t allow. [15 USC 1692f] § 808(1)
3. Call repeatedly or continuously
The FDCPA considers repeat calls as harassment. [15 USC 1692d] § 806(5)
4. Use obscene, profane, or abusive language
Using this kind of language is considered harassment. [15 USC 1692d] § 806(2)
5. Call before 8:00 am or after 9:00 pm
Calls during these times are considered harassment. [15 USC 1692c] § 805(a)(1)
6. Call at times the collector knew or should know are inconvenient (Hours Bill Collectors Can Call)
Calls at these times are considered harassment. [15 USC 1692c] § 805(a)(1)
7. Use or threaten to use violence if you don’t pay the debt
Collectors can’t threaten violence against you. [15 USC 1692d] § 806(1)
8. Threaten action they cannot or will not take
Collectors can’t threaten to sue or file charges against you, garnish wages, take property, cause job loss, or ruin your credit when the collector cannot or does not intend to take the action. [15 USC 1692e] § 807(5)
9. Illegally inform a third party about your alleged debt
Unless you have expressly given them permission, collectors are not allowed to inform anyone about your debt except:
- your FDCPA attorney
- the creditor
- the creditor’s attorney
- a credit reporting agency
- your spouse
- your parent (if you are a minor)
[15 USC 1692c] § 805(b)
10. Repeatedly call a third party to get your location information
The collector can only contact a third party once unless it has reason to believe the information previously provided is false. [15 USC 1692b] § 804(1)
11. Threaten to send you to Jail, send the Sheriff, or tell you “God Would Not Be Happy.”
All of these are violations of the law, subject to a $1000 penalty per violation, and the collector who is abusing you can be forced to pay your attorney’s fees for bringing the action. Attorneys like me LOVE that provision – it means that if you’re abused by the collector, we can bring suit against the abusive collection agency at no cost to you. Not bad, eh?
Debt Collection Attorney Eric Ridley wants to talk to you right now. How to Report Debt Collectors? FDCPA Attorney Eric Ridley will explain everything. Eric Ridley is one of the Ventura Debt Collector Abuse Lawyers who is friendly and wants to help.