There are many federal and state laws designed to protect consumers. Laws exist to protect consumers from defective products and bad faith insurance tactics. Some laws protect consumers from fraudulent and deceptive business practices. Our Surprise FDCPA attorneys focus on the laws that protect consumers from unfair debt collection practices.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) protects consumers from a wide variety of creditor harassment, including debt collection practices which are unfair or abusive. The FDCPA is a federal law, so it applies to debt collectors in every state. The protections in the FDCPA apply to debt collectors, not original creditors. Debt collectors are third parties who purchase bad debts or act on behalf of a creditor to collect a debt. The FDCPA covers most consumer debts, but it does not apply to business debts.
In general, debt collectors are prohibited from:
- Calling you after 9:00 p.m. or before 8:00 a.m. without the person’s permission.
- Communicating with you except to tell you about a certain action, such as the filing of a lawsuit, if you notify the debt collector in writing to stop communication.
- Using profanity or obscene language.
- Sending documents that resemble a legal document.
- Claiming that you can be arrested when it is not true.
- Threaten to use or using violence.
- Contacting you at work if your employer does not allow personal calls.
- Claiming that your property is about to be seized if that is not the case.
- Adding unauthorized fees, interest, and charges to your debt.
The above list is not an exhaustive list of the protections under the FDCPA. Basically, a debt collector is prohibited from using false pretenses, misrepresentations, fraud, threats, harassment, and unfair practices to collect a debt. In the event that your property is seized or you are considering foreclosure, a Surprise foreclosure attorney can help simplify the process.
If you believe your rights have been violated or you are the victim of creditor harassment, contact our Surprise FDCPA attorneys. There are remedies under the FDCPA, including filing lawsuits against the debt collector or debt collection agency for violations of the FDCPA.
Filing Bankruptcy To Stop Creditor Harassment
Most debt collection agencies and debt collectors follow the standards and requirements set forth by the FDCPA. However, that does not mean that they cannot exhibit conduct that pushes the boundaries right up to the line. Debt collectors can be relentless. They may call every day and send letters every week demanding payment.
In some cases, debt collectors file lawsuits to collect the debt. Most individuals experiencing debt problems ignore the lawsuits, which result in a default judgment. In Arizona, creditors can garnish your wages to collect a personal judgment.
Therefore, you might want to consider filing for bankruptcy relief to stop creditor harassment and debt collections. The moment you file your bankruptcy petition, the automatic stay provisions of the Bankruptcy Code protect you from all forms of debt collection. A creditor or debt collector must obtain court approval to resume debt collection efforts. Without good cause, the court does not modify the automatic stay to allow for debt collection efforts.
Through a Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy case, you can get rid of the debts that are causing you a problem. With a fresh start, you can rebuild after a financial hardship. Being proactive and contact a qualified Surprise bankruptcy attorney to help navigate a complicated legal landscape may be your best path forward.
Contact Our Surprise FDCPA Attorneys for More Information
If a debt collector is harassing you or you believe your rights have been violated, we can help.
Contact the legal team of 602 Law Group by calling 602-562-5000 to schedule your free consultation with a Surprise FDCPA lawyer. We want to hear what has happened to you so that we can help develop a plan to end creditor harassment and resolve your debt problem.