What do you do when a debt collector says you owe $10,000 but the documentation shows you owe less? You tell them that they are violating the law. Yes, it is true.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the Rosenthal Act, which you may know as the FDCPA and the R-FDCPA, prohibit debt collections from (1) misrepresenting the amount that a consumer owes on a debt and (2) collecting any amount unless it is ““expressly authorized by the agreement creating the debt or permitted by law.” What does this mean in English?
A debt collector cannot tell you that you owe one amount when you actually owe less. If you owe $5,000 and they tell you that you owe $6,500, then they are violating the law. How do you prove this? Take good notes! When they call you, ask them how much they believe is owed. Write this down next to the name of the person who called, the date, and the time. Any time that they call you, ask them this again and document it the same way. Every single time!
Also, a debt collector cannot add in fees that are not allowed for in the agreement. Lets use a credit card as an example. If you have a credit card with Bank A, and the agreement says that they can only add in interest and late fees, then they cannot add in court costs or fees. When you ask for validation of the debt, you should ask them to break down the amount owed so you know how they are calculating it. You should also ask for the original agreement so you can determine if they are adding in fees that are not allowed.
Collectors continue to attempt to collect excessive amounts.