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How FDCPA protects consumers from harassment for collection

| May 5, 2016 | Creditors' Rights |

People in the Tyler area who are overwhelmed by consumer debt might be fearful that the creditors are going to harass them non-stop until the debts are paid. Understanding how the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) protects a person from unwanted communication with creditors can help with stopping the contact.

In general, the debt collector is not allowed to make contact with the debtor at unusual times or locations or if they know that the time and place at which they are making contact is an inconvenient one. For example, a debt collector who knows that a debtor is not supposed to be receiving personal calls while at work, yet still contacts the debtor while he or she is at work, will be violating the law.

When the debtor has hired legal representation to help with the debt, the debt collector is also obligated to cease contacting the debtor regarding collection and make contact with the legal representative. A person who receives a call from a debt collector after retaining an attorney need only to inform the collector that an attorney has been hired and that all calls should go there.

When a debt collector has been told in writing that the contact must stop, the collector is no longer allowed to make contact except in the following circumstances: to tell the debtor that the contact will stop, and to inform the debtor that the collector or creditor has the right to take certain steps to recover the debt such as a legal filing. When the debt collector does contact a debtor, there is a legal requirement to say the name of the creditor, give the amount that is owed, and inform the debtor how to dispute or seek verification of the debt.

Among the biggest problems for a debtor is dealing with the issues that arise from violations of the law when it comes to making contact. This adds to the stress that comes from being in a situation of not being able to pay what is allegedly owed. If there is an issue with violations of the Fair Debt Collection Act, speaking to an attorney experienced in helping clients with asserting their rights can help with ending the harassing phone calls and letters.

Source: consumerfinance.gov, “The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) — Communicating with debt collectors,” accessed on May 3, 2016