Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) governs debt collectors and restricts what they can and cannot do in the collection of debt. If they violate the rules, you have the option of filing a lawsuit against them.
Debt collection by third-party debt buyers is a lucrative business. Debt collectors are known to employ extreme measures and harassing tactics to collect debt. However FDCPA prohibits them from doing any of the following:
- They cannot call you before 8 a.m. in the morning or after 9 p.m.
- They cannot contact you after receipt of a letter from you telling them to stop
- If they contact you at work and you tell them to stop calling you at work, they must stop.
- They cannot lie about the debt or use deception in any way
- They cannot put your name or address on a "bad debt" list
- They cannot add additional fees or charges that are not allowed by law
- They cannot threaten to arrest you
- They cannot verbally abuse you with profanity
- They cannot tell your family or friends about your debt -- they can only tell your spouse and attorney
- They cannot put false information on your credit report or threaten to do so
- They cannot file a lawsuit in a jurisdictions other than the one that you live in and/or the jurisdiction where you signed relevant contracts
A lawsuit can be filed in State or Federal court against third-party debt collectors for damages when they violate FDCPA. Under the FDCPA, if a debt collector is found to have violated the law, a consumer can recover statutory damages up to $1,000.
If you are being harassed by debt collectors, make an appointment with our Fort Lauderdale bankruptcy attorney at the Bankruptcy Law Firm of Clare Casas!