What Is The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act And How Can It Benefit Me

August 3, 2009 by  
Filed under Debt

A few decades ago it was realized that protection for consumers was becoming increasingly necessary due to the ruthlessness of debt recovery companies with questionable strategies for recovering the debts. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) was finally passed in 1978 to help consumers in this way and to confront erroneous information held about them.

Following are some of the main points of the act that are beneficial to consumers.

The consumer will be covered in the event where a debt settlement company is getting in touch on behalf of another financial company. In many cases the contact may be somewhat intimidating given further need for the FDCPA. If it is the financial company to which the consumer owes is contacting them , in most states, the FDCPA will not be relevant.

The debt settlement company must, on each contact, inform you of the nature of their company and your right for challenging the debt itself, this is known as the 1692 notice.

You may put in writing within the 30 day period of notice,
a request for all the information regarding the debt, such as the creditor to which the debt is owed and proof that the debt exists.

Should they take the matter to court, it is required to be in the area in which you live or where the debt took place after signing the agreement.

The debt agencies must never contact you by telephone before 8am or after 9pm in the evening, in your local time zone or call continually in an intimidating manner. If you put in writing that you do not wish to be contacted at work, this must also be adhered to.

Should you write to them stating that you do not wish to be contacted, they must abide by your wishes only informing you of their imminent actions where appropriate.

If you have enlisted the aid of an attorney, the debt agency must use them as the first point of contact.

All details regarding your debt must be correct and the debt agency cannot act as if they are attorneys when contacting you to put you in a position where you might disclose personal information. They should never force you to pay an amount exceeding you actual debt.

Any aggressive language or actions are forbidden and they cannot publish your personal details on a bad debt record or reveal the details to any other establishment.

Any threats such as court action or arrest must not be applied unless they are going to take place.

If you are currently being contacted by a debt settlement company on behalf of your creditor, you would be well advised to read the full act for the full details of your rights. If the act has been contradicted in any way, you should report this to the Federal Trade Commission. Always be aware of your rights as a citizen and act accordingly.