Unfair Debt Collection
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) provides a list of guidelines and rules that debt collectors must follow when seeking to collect debts from consumers. Various other provisions of the Federal Truth in Lending Act (TILA) and the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) protect borrowers and consumers.
Regardless of whether you owe money, and regardless of how much you owe, you should never allow a debt collector to harass you, unfairly disclose your personal information to others, intimidate you, or lie to you.
Illegal Debt Collection Practices
In most circumstances debt collectors are never allowed to:
- Call your cell phone,
- Call you at work so long as you tell them to stop calling you at work,
- Disclose your personal information to others,
- Garnish your wages or bank account without first filing and winning a lawsuit,
- Pretend that they are affiliated with any governmental agency or bureau,
- Try to collect debts that are so old that they are barred by the statute of limitations,
- Use call-blocking,
- Call outside of designated hours, or calling repeatedly in the same day,
- Collect a debt without first writing a 30-day letter,
- Send any correspondence or engage in any telephone conversation with you without first warning that they are debt collectors trying to collect a debt.
As a consumer of credit and borrower, you have an array of rights. You have the right to demand proof of your debt, and the right to dispute your debt. If any information contained on your credit report is inaccurate, you have the right have that information removed.
In situations where debt collectors engage in unfair or illegal behavior, the FDCPA affords the right of the individual to file a class action lawsuit. As part of that lawsuit, the filing party is able to recover compensatory damages, statutory damages, costs and attorney fees. In many instances, if you are experiencing unfair debt collection practices, we will be able to represent you on a contingent fee. This means that we will will only take a fee if we are able to recover money on your behalf from the debt collectors.
If you or someone you know has experienced unfair or illegal debt collection practices, please send us a direct message, or call our office at (314) 725-4400. For more information on some of our recent cases, please visit our news page. We also have an FAQ relating to some of these issues.