Debt Collection Practices Lawyers
Can Debt Collection Agencies Call Me At Any Time In The Day Or Night?
It is illegal for a bill collector who works for a collection agency to call you before 8 AM or after 9 PM. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) also bars collectors from:
- calling a debtor at work
- using abusive language
- making false or misleading statements
- adding unauthorized charges
- making threats
Under the FDCPA, you have the right to demand that the collection agency stop contacting you, except to tell you that collection efforts have ended or that the creditor or collection agency will sue you. This demand must be in writing.
Does The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Also Apply To Vendors or Merchants That Keep Contacting Me To Collect Debts?
No, the FDCPA applies only to bill collectors who work for collection agencies. Several states have laws which bar debt collectors working for a collection agency or for the creditor itself from harassing, abusing or threatening you or making any false or misleading statement. These state laws, however, don't give you the right to demand that the collector stop contacting you.
Is a Form Demand Letter with a Lawyer's Stamped Signature a Legitimate Collection Technique?
Perhaps not. Under the FDCPA, a lawyer must review each individual collection case before putting their name on a collection letter. The lawyer can't simply authorize that a form letter be sent and then let the bill collector send it, with the lawyer's signature, if the lawyer hasn't reviewed the particular debtor's file. To put a stop to it, you may be able to sue the lawyer for up to $1,000 in small claims court for violating the FDCPA.
Can a Debt Collector Insist That Payment Be Sent By Express Mail Or Wire Transfer?
No, and it could add a lot to your debt if you did. Many collectors, especially when a debt is more than 90-days past due, will suggest several "urgency payment" options, including:
- sending money by express or overnight mail when a first class stamp is fine
- wiring money
- putting payments on a credit card
Can a Collection Agency Add Interest to my Debt?
A collection agency can not add interest to your debt unless it was called for in your original agreement or allowed under your state's law. Many states do authorize the collection of such interest.
Do I Need an Attorney if I am Being Harassed by Debt Collectors?
Harassment by debt collectors can be very stressful. If you are being contacted by debt collectors in ways you believe are improper, consult with an experience attorney who knows the acceptable debt collection practices in your area.
Consult a Lawyer - Present Your Case Now!
Last Modified: 09-15-2011 04:36 PM PDT
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