Debt collectors make mistakes – a lot of them. Not all debt collectors, but a fair number of them. When they do, you need to be able to assert your rights. So let me share with you three very frequent debt collection violations.
1. Failing to verify disputed debts: The FDCPA provides that, if a consumer does submit a dispute in writing, the collector must cease collection efforts until it has provided written verification of the debt. Collectors ignore consumers written disputes, send no verification, and continue their collection efforts.
2. Impermissible calls to consumer’s place of employment: A debt collector may not contact a consumer at work if the collector knows or has reason to know that the consumer’s employer prohibits the consumer from receiving such contacts. Debt collectors continue to call consumers at work after the consumer specifically told the collectors that such calls were prohibited by the consumer’s employer.
3. Revealing alleged debt to third parties: Generally, third-party contacts for any purpose other than obtaining information about the consumer’s location violate the Act. Third-party collectors have contacted consumers’ employers, relatives, children, neighbors, and friends, and informed them about consumers’ debts.
There are other violations – a lot of them. The law protects consumers. But you need to know your rights. Watch out for these three violations. If you are unsure if there was a violation, talk to an attorney. Find out your rights. Then you can make an informed decision on what to do next.