The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is a piece of legislation that is designed to prevent debt collectors from using unscrupulous tactics to collect debts. This law governs the actions that a debt collector can use and helps to protect consumers. It determines when a debtor can be called, what the debt collector can say, and what they cannot say. This piece of legislation is enforced by the Fair Trade Commission. Here are the basics of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and how it works.

Times of Contact

Contrary to what some people may believe, debt collectors are not allowed to contact you at all times. There are certain times that debt collectors are prohibited from calling you when trying to collect a debt. They are not allowed to call you before 8:00 in the morning or after 9:00 at night. In addition to this, they cannot contact you while you are at work if you tell them that they are not allowed to do so. You can tell them this in writing or orally.

Stopping Contact

Debt collectors can be very persistent and they may try to call you frequently. If you are tired of the calls, you do not necessarily have to keep receiving them. In order to stop the calls, you can send them a letter that tells them to stop communicating with you. When you do this, it is usually a good idea to send your letter be a certified mail and asked for a return receipt. This way, you will know exactly when the debt collector receives the letter. At that point, if they try to continue contacting you repeatedly, you will have proof that they are in violation of the law. They are allowed to contact you to tell you that they will no longer be contacting you in the future or if they plan on doing something specific like filing a lawsuit against you.

Prohibited Behavior

According to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, there are a number of behaviors that are prohibited by debt collectors. For example, they are not allowed to harass you in anyway. This means that they cannot repeatedly call you over and over again to annoy you. They also cannot threaten you with violence or use profane language when talking to you. In addition to being prohibited from threatening with violence, they also cannot threaten to put you in jail or garnish your wages. 

Debt collectors are also not allowed to lie to you. Anytime that they talk to you, they cannot say that they are someone else or tell you that you owe a different amount of money.

When it comes to actually collecting the money, the debt collector is also prohibited from doing certain things. For example, they are not allowed to charge interest on the debt that you owe or try to deposit a post-dated check early. They also cannot take your property unless a judgment has told them to do so.

 

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