If you have fallen behind on your car payments, your mortgage, or any other bill, then creditors will probably pursue you for repayment. It’s perfectly legal for them to do this, but they can only do so within the confines of the law. Under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, creditors are expected to behave in certain ways and also must refrain from activities that are illegal.
Being in debt can be stressful in itself, and you may find yourself in this situation through no fault of your own. If you’ve been subjected to any of the following behaviors, then you may be able to hold debt collectors to account.
Being charged for someone else’s debt
You thought that bringing in a roommate would be a good idea to earn some extra income. Unfortunately, it’s turned out to be more trouble than it’s worth. They’ve used your address to take out loans and pile up all sorts of other bills.
They then left the property without giving any notice. You have no idea where they might have gone. Creditors, however, are still pursuing them for payment, and as they are not around, they’ve shifted their focus to you. You are not legally responsible for the debt of someone else and it is unlawful for debt collectors to pursue you for what you do not owe.
Debt collectors also have to be mindful of how they communicate with you. A creditor might be frustrated that they have not received payment, but that doesn’t mean they can vent these frustrations in an illegal manner. Debt collectors should never make you feel scared and they certainly have no authority to use physical force or suggest criminal penalties apply.
Debt collectors are also only permitted to call you at certain times of day, usually between the hours of 8 am and 9 p.m. If you’re struggling with debt, it’s important to remember that you are not on your own. Seeking some legal guidance will help you explore your options and get back on your feet again.