Are Debt Collectors Calling Your House? Know YOUR Rights! Learn What Debt Collectors CAN and CANNOT Do!
Does your blood pressure go up every time your phone rings? Do you get daily calls from debt collectors? If so, don't worry, you are not alone. Calls from debt collectors are annoying…no doubt about it. However, did you know that you do have certain rights when it comes to debt collection? As I always say, knowledge is power! The more you know, the better off you will be! Some debt collectors are bullies. There, I said it…and I don't feel bad at all! In fact, they can be down-right rude. The better you understand how debt collectors operate and what they are allowed and not allowed to do the better!
First of all, did you know that there is an actual law in place that applies to debt collection? Well, there is! The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) clearly states what debt collectors can and cannot do in order to collect money from consumers. Some states have their own debt collection laws, however, they are all some-what similar in nature. The FDCPA applies to the collection of different loans such as your mortgage, car loans, utility bills and credit cards (just to name a few). Debt collectors that abide by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act are NOT allowed to do the following:
- Call before 8:00 AM or after 9:00 PM…unless you have told them it is ok. You can also tell a debt collector when NOT to call. For example, if you work the night shift and sleep during the day, you can tell them NOT to call during your sleeping hours. If they continue to do so, they are breaking the law!
- A debt collector is not allowed to call you over and over again in one day. This would be considered harassment.
- They are not permitted to embarrass you by calling your friends or family and informing them that you owe money and don't pay your bills. This is illegal! They cannot embarrass you into making a payment! A debt collector CAN call people that you may know in order to obtain your current phone number and or address. They are within the law as long as they do not tell the individual WHY they are searching for you.
- A debt collector is NOT permitted to contact your boss or employer about a debt you may owe unless the debt happens to be non-payment of child support.
- Sunday is a FREE day…or to some, a Holy day! Debt collectors MAY NOT contact you on SUNDAY…no exceptions!
- If the debt collector agrees to accept a post-dated check from you, they CANNOT cash the check BEOFRE the agreed upon date! This is against the law!
- A debt collector is not allowed to swear at you or insult you. They also CANNOT threaten you with prison time. They can threaten you by saying that they are going to garnish your wages, however, the laws vary state by state so it is important that you know what laws pertain to you when it comes to legal garnishments.
- Finally, a debt collector is not allowed to mail you a post card or envelope that clearly indicates that you are in financial trouble. In other words, they cannot mail a large envelope with the words DEBT COLLECTION written on it…or from: DEBT COLLECTOR. This is against the law! After all, your business is YOUR BUSINESS….your neighbors do not need to know about your financial troubles!
Being in debt and dealing with debt collectors can be very intimidating…not to mention scary! If you are over-whelmed with credit card debt and are in desperate need of help and advice, why not contact a reputable credit card counseling service! Hopefully, they will be able to help you set up a debt management plan and put you on the right track towards financial freedom! Don't let debt collectors intimidate you….know your rights and fight back! Good luck.
If you have a few moments to spare, please read some of my other financial HUB Pages: