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Debt collectors: 5 things they are not allowed to do

On Behalf of | Sep 11, 2021 | Medical Debt |

Being in debt can be stressful. Debt collection agencies can be relentless. 

Debt collectors can be aggressive in their methods, even breaking the law sometimes. Being in debt does not mean you sacrifice your legal rights. You’re not obliged to succumb to the unlawful practices of some debt collectors. Outlined below are 5 of the most common illegitimate collections methods debt collectors may employ:

Relentlessly calling you at unreasonable hours

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is the federal law that spells out how debt collectors must conduct themselves. That law doesn’t highlight any specific number for what constitutes an unreasonable amount of calls in one day. However, the law clearly states that debt collectors must not place an unreasonable number of calls at any time. 

Additionally, debt collectors are not permitted to call before 8 am or after 9 pm. Collection agencies can call you out with these hours if you have specifically arranged for them to do so. 

Calling after you have asked them to stop 

You can request that debt collectors only interact with you in writing. You should do this in writing via certified email. If debt collectors continue to call you after receiving this notification, then you might be able to hold them liable for violating the (FDCPA). 

Threatening to arrest you 

Debt collectors have no authority to arrest you. Merely being in debt is generally not enough to land you in jail. 

Embarrassing you by telling others about your debt

Debt collectors are only allowed to contact third parties, such as employers, to locate you. They cannot discuss the details of your debt with anyone other than you or your legal representative. 

Impersonating government agencies 

Debt collectors may occasionally use titles or language to make you think they represent a government agency or are law enforcement. This may also violate the FDCPA.

Knowing the laws that restrict debt collectors’ actions is in your best interests. You still have legal rights and protections, even if you’re struggling with debt.

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