Illegal Collection Tactics

You may have debts, but that doesn’t strip you of your rights.  Owing money doesn’t justify intimidation, harassment, threats or other illegal activity on the part of creditors or collectors.

You do have rights.

Unfortunately, many debt collectors act as if you don’t.  They consistently break the law, engaging in behavior that violates the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and the Iowa Debt Collections Practices Act (IDCPA).

We see illegal collection tactics in use almost every day.  For example:

  • If a debt collector communicates with you (in written or oral form) and fails to inform you that the communication is from a collector and will be used for that purpose, the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If a debt collector calls anyone other than the account holder about debt (excluding co-signers) for any reason other than locating the account holder, the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If a debt collector calls your place of work after you’ve told them not to do so, the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If the debt collector harasses you (using obscene or profane language, calling more than once per day, engaging in threatening behavior, etc.), the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If the debt collector makes any threat or intimidation, not limited to phone calls or letters, like telling you that Sheriff will be sent to your workplace, threatening you with a garnishment or warning you that they’ll publicly advertise your debt, the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If the debt collector is attempting to collect a debt that was discharged in bankruptcy or that no longer exists by sending bills, calling for payments, demanding full payment in a short period or trying to collect on an already-settled account, the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If the debt collector engages in inaccurate reporting to credit bureaus, the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If the debt collector misrepresents the amount of money you owe or the legal status of the debt, the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If the debt collector continues to contact you after they’re on notice that an attorney is representing you, the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If the debt collector threatens to garnish your wages or to take your personal property without having a legal right or court order, the debt collector is breaking the law.
  • If the debt collector threatens you with criminal prosecution or implies you’re committing a crime or that you could be arrested or jailed, the debt collector is breaking the law.

You can find an even more detailed list of ways debt collectors may be violating your rights at the Federal Trade Commission’s website.

Many creditors know that they’re acting illegally.  They simply find it more profitable to break the law than it is to follow it.  They know that most people don’t understand their rights and won’t act to defend them.

You can protect your rights. If you’re dealing with a collector who you believe is acting illegally or inappropriately, contact us for a free consultation.

If they’re breaking the law, you may be entitled to file a lawsuit against them.  Marks Law Firm will help you to take a stand against unfair, unethical and illegal collection activity.  Call or contact us immediately to schedule a free consultation or telephone conference.

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