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What is The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act?

What is the Fair Debt Collection Practices ActThe Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is a Federal Law enacted in 1977.  Congress enacted the Act after growing evidence that Debt collectors were using abusive, deceptive, and unfair debt collection techniques.  Congress also recognized that the laws before the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act was passed were inadequate, inconsistent and that consumers were suffering.  Additionally, Congress  recognized that the elimination of these practices would not hinder the effective collection of debt.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act regulates third party debt collectors and attorneys who regularly collect debt.  The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act was enacted to collection agencies from harassing consumers while collecting debts.    The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act doesn’t support the nonpayment of debt; it simply states that while you are attempting to get your finances in order so that you can pay you shouldn’t be treated inhumanly.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Prohibits Certain Third Party Communications.

To answer the question “What is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act?” we need to first review its prohibits on third party communications.  The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act has prohibitions on certain third party communications.  The statute states that debt collectors are never allowed to contact any of your friends or family members.  The exception to this provision permits debt collectors to contact third parties only if they don’t know how to get a hold of you.  However, under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, they are only allowed to call each person once and they are never allowed to disclose to third parties that you owe a debt!

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Prohibits Unwanted Calls at work!

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act also has clear restrictions on debt collectors contacting consumers at work.  The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act prohibits debt collectors from calling you at work when either they know, or have reason to know, that your employer does not allow you to receive personal calls or that the you don’t want to be contacted at work.  So, if you are getting calls at your place of employment by a third party debt collector, tell the debt collector to stop calling you at work.  Alternatively, if you are getting calls by third party debt collectors at your residence or on your cellular phone and are afraid they are going to start calling you at work – tell them not to never call you at your place of employment.

If after telling the debt collector not to call you at work, if they do, they have violated the FDCPA and you have the right to sue for damages.  The rationale behind the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act’s prohibition on work place telephone calls is simple; if you’re getting calls at work when you’re not allowed to you will likely get fired.  If you get fired you can’t pay your debts.  As such, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act prohibits work place telephone calls if you notify the third party debt collector that you are prohibited from receiving them or if you simply don’t want to be contacted at work.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Prohibitions against Idle Threats

To find out what is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, you must also be aware of its The Fair prohibitions on debt collectors threatening any action against you that they are not permitted to take or that the collection agency don’t intend to take.  Similarly, debt collectors are not allowed to threaten you with action they don’t intend to take.  An example of this is threatening to refer your debt to an attorney, sue you, seek garnishment of your wages, etc. if they don’t intend to actually do so.  It should also be noted that a debt collector that is not an attorney is never allowed to threaten to sue you since they are not permitted to practice law.  The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act tells debt collectors that they cannot threaten to do something they are not allowed or do not intend to do.

Time Of Day/Other Restrictions

The FDCPA also prohibits collection calls before 8am or after 9pm.  The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act prohibits debt collectors from calling over and over and it prohibits the use of profane language.  Additionally, it prohibits bill collectors from engaging in any conduct the natural consequence is to harass, oppress, or abuse any person.  This is a pretty broad restriction and is the basis for a good amount of FDCPA lawsuits.  The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is your shield and sword against aggressive debt collection activity.  Learn your rights so you can fight back.

Some of my Debt Collectors Violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act – Now What?

Once you are able to answer the question what is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act you are half way there.  If your debt collectors violated the Statute, its time to hire an experienced Fair Debt Collection Practices Act attorney and put those debt collectors in their place.  The FDCPA provides for up to$1,000.00 in statutory damages, uncapped actual damages, and forces the debt collector to pay my attorney fees.

If you think a debt collector has violated the FDCPA, call us at 312-380-6110 or click on the banner below to fill out a free case review.  Debt Collectors Hate Us Because we help Consumers answer the question:

What is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act?

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15 Comments

  1. Burt M. Bailey says:

    National Credit Adjusters called a past student of mine from two years ago to ask for my phone number and told her it was for a collection. She contacted the office of my biggest account to tell them.
    This puts my largest account of $18,000 at risk if they get personal calls about collections against me.
    I call them, talked to Anthony Morris 866/276-7921 ref:460627. They were very rude and aggressive against me – even asking for this persons name and phone number. They promised a letter from Mark Byer (on 9/23/13) to tell me what this debt is – IT HAS NEVER COME YET!
    To make if worse – my cell phone number has been listed under my name for over 10 years.
    I have been cut by $300 per month and restricted from store access – my second largest billing site.
    HOW CAN THESE PEOPLE BREAK THE FAIR DEBT COLLECTION PRACTICES ACT, cost my $300/month, and risk my largest account???
    STOP THEM!!!

    • Jeffrey Hyslip says:

      National Credit Adjusters seems to be a scam company that is collecting debts out of New York. Several consumer lawyers have filed lawsuits against them and they simply don’t show up to court and lose by default. While I can’t advise you not to pay them, if it were me and someone was doing what they are doing to me, I certainly wouldn’t be sending them money. I would be afraid that they’d demand more “or else”. Since they are not defending some of the lawsuits that are being brought against them it really might not be worth your time to sue them. I would, however, contact the Federal Trade Commission, your local Attorney General, and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and let them know that NCA has harassed another consumer. Sooner or later the governmental bodies will pay attention to National Credit Adjusters. We just have to make enough noise!

      Regards,

      Jeffrey

    • Jeffrey Hyslip says:

      Has National Credit Adjusters left you alone recently, Burt?

  2. Raimi Shoaga says:

    I have a question, I do not have any comment.

  3. Austin says:

    I was evicted from an apartment around 9 months into our lease with no warning for being too noisy. (no warnings).
    We gave our new address and settled our rent we owed, not hearing from them until about a year later where I.Q. Data international has been harassing me for the past year. They WONT provide any written, electronic, or printed documentation of the debt owed or an itemization of the some $4000 they say i owe. Need to see what i can do.

    • Jeffrey Hyslip says:

      It certainly sounds like I.Q. Data International might be violating the FDCPA. A collection agency must provide validation of the debt is properly requested. If they have violated the law we can help you at no charge. We have your email address and will reach out tomorrow. Otherwise, feel free to call us tomorrow morning if you wish. We look forward to helping you get I.Q. Data International off your back!

      -Jeffrey

  4. Tracy says:

    A man calling himself an “investigator” for a 3rd party collection agency called me and left me a VM. When I did not return the call, he contacted my father 3 times – once he left a VM, 2nd time he spoke to my father and my father hung up on him. He called back again and told my father that he was trying to get in touch with me to warn me about a civil and/or criminal charge being brought against me for a debt.

    What can I do about this?

    • Jeffrey Hyslip says:

      Hey Tracy,

      Sorry for the delay in responding to you. If I were you I would read this article I wrote –> http://www.avvo.com/legal-guides/ugc/fair-debt-collection—scam-debt-collectors-are-increasing—-make-sure-you-dont-send–to-one

      Legitimate debt collectors don’t call themselves investigators and most that do are scam debt collectors. Furthermore, not paying your consumer debt is not a crime. I would tell the company that you spoke with a consumer advocate who advised you that they are a scam debt collector. Let them know they can harass you as much as they want but you won’t be paying them a dime. Most likely they will move on to the next “name” on their list and leave you alone.

      Thanks for reaching out.

      Jeffrey Hyslip

  5. Sally Bowden says:

    I was contacted today the number that showed up on my phone was 911? I called the number they left on my voicemail, the reason I did call was because they said they were Officer Watson calling from Oregon state police and there was an ongoing investigation on me for fraudulent activity. I called Officer Johnson they answered the phone Oregon department of justice, I was given a court document number and transferred to Officer Johnson. He said he will call my place of business and tell them what I did being involved in an investigation of fraud. I based which court house this was filed through but I couldn’t understand him. I tools him I couldn’t be arrested for owing money he got mad and said hope you have fun in jail and hung up. What can I do?

    • Jeffrey Hyslip says:

      Sally,

      Based on what you’ve explained I can say with the utmost certainty that you are being contacted by a scam debt collector. My guess is that you recently took out or applied for a payday loan. Make sure that you do not pay the company any money nor give out any of your personal information. Further, I would consider contacting your local police department just to make them aware of the scam debt collection operation that contacted you. To learn more about scam debt collectors, read this —> http://www.avvo.com/legal-guides/ugc/fair-debt-collection—scam-debt-collectors-are-increasing—-make-sure-you-dont-send–to-one. I am sure you are terrified but I can assure you that you can rest at peace. From what I’ve researched there is no state that arrests consumers for not paying debts.

      Thanks for reaching out!

      Jeffrey Hyslip.

  6. Carrie says:

    If someone is a “additional card holder” on an account and never signed the credit card agreement. i.e. was added on to a parents account for convenience of buying things for a sick parent. The parent is now deceased and a third party debt collector is now trying to collect the balance from the “additional card holder”. Is this legal since they can not prove they signed an agreement and can they put a bad mark on their credit report?

    • Jeffrey Hyslip says:

      Hey Carrie,

      First I am sorry to hear that you have lost a parent. I dread the day that happens to me. The answer to your question would depend on obtaining a few pieces of information. With that said, my general answer would be that you would be responsible for the charges that you made for your sick parent not for the entire card balance. Regarding Credit Reporting, that makes the scenario more interesting. Why don’t you give us a call when time permits and we’ll take a deeper look into whether or not the debt collector is violating the FDCPA.

      Cordially,

      Jeffrey

  7. Carmendy Danielss says:

    Hi,

    I called I Q Data because I have a property debt, I agreed to pay the amount they are asking for, however I am worried that after I pay them they will not take it off my credit and that they will not give me any proof that my debt has been paid off, I need this proof in order to get into any new apartments. Is there anything I can do to guarantee getting something in writing?

    • Jeffrey Hyslip says:

      Hello Carmendy,

      Sorry for the late reply, as I didn’t see your comment until now. We’ve helped several consumers against IQ Data! Why don’t you give us a call when time permits so we can discuss your situation. We’d enjoy helping you get what you desire in writing from IQ Data.

      -Jeffrey

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