Three Things That Debt Collectors Can Legally Do To Consumers

Debt collectors have a bad reputation for harassing and abusing consumers, and this reputation was well earned as many debt collection agencies have gotten into serious legal trouble over the way that consumers have been treated. But there are certain things that debt collectors may do legally that could place consumers on edge or that consumers may find nerve racking. Below are three things that debt collectors can legally do to consumers, despite how annoying the actions of the debt collectors may seem.


  1. Debt Collectors Can Call Someone Other Than You, But Only To Locate You. Debt collectors are prohibited from discussing your debts with anyone but you. This means that as a general rule, debt collectors are not allowed to call your family members, your place of employment, your boss, etc., under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). However, debt collectors may contact these people one time each if the debt collector is having difficulty contacting you directly. The only thing that the debt collector may ask for is your current contact information, and nothing else. When a debt collector repeatedly contacts someone other than you about your debt, it is likely a form of abuse and a violation of the FDCPA.
  2. Debt Collectors Can Call Every Day If They Want To, Unless You Formally Tell Them To Stop. If you are screening your calls because you don’t know what to do about the debt collector that keeps calling you, you may notice that the debt collector is calling once a day, maybe twice. One or two calls a day between the hours of 8am-9pm local time is acceptable under the FDCPA, unless the debtor specifically requests that the debt collector stop calling. A formal request from the debtor that the debt collector cease calling should put an end to unwanted calls or text messages. But if the debt collector does not stop calling, it may constitute harassment under the FDCPA.
  3. Debt Collectors Can Call From An Unlisted Number. Many consumers screen their phone calls and get nervous when the caller ID says that the number is unknown. Debt collectors are not required to call from a known number and nothing about calling from an unknown number is inherently deceptive. However, once you pick up the call, the debt collector is required to be upfront and honest with you about who they are and why they are calling you. Any sort of deception or misrepresentation on the part of the debt collector can constitute a violation of the FDCPA.


Contact A New York Debt Defense Attorney


There are laws in place to protect you, your family and your life from debt collectors and debt collection abuses. The best way to handle debt collectors is to be informed and to know your rights. If you need help understanding your rights when it comes to debt collection practices, feel free to contact a New York debt collection abuse lawyer immediately. Contact the Bromberg Law Office, P.C. to schedule an appointment today.