It is the rare Texan who lives without debt. Debt is a way of life for the vast majority of Americans; it’s what allows us to buy a home or a car, send our kids to college, or go on that dream vacation. But sometimes, unforeseen circumstances such as the loss of a job or an unexpected hospitalization lead to debt that is more than a family can handle. As unpaid bills pile up, as the interest grows on your debt, and as your earnings fail to increase, anxiety may consume you as you worry about the overwhelming financial burden you face.
Making matters worse, creditors can make every day a living hell, with the debt collectors they hire constantly attempting to get paid. But these companies can go too far in their efforts. Harassment, threats, deception, intimidation and other abusive conduct can make life a nightmare for those on the receiving end of constant phone calls or late notices. Such behavior is also against the law.
North Texas consumers who are victims of creditor harassment and abusive debt collection practices have rights and remedies under federal and state debt collection laws. They also have a law firm that can protect them from unfair and illegal collection misconduct. At Warren & Migliaccio, L.L.P., our attorneys fight back against abusive debt collectors and creditors. We can make the calls stop, hold these unscrupulous companies responsible for their wrongful actions, and even obtain compensation for those victimized by their harassment.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is a federal law which imposes limitations on what debt collectors can do when contacting and communicating with debtors and others, and provides abused consumers with remedies – including the recovery of compensation – when debt collection companies fail to comply with the law.
While the FDCPA does not stop debt collectors from attempting to obtain payment on behalf of a creditor, it does limit the ways they can go about it. Specifically, the FDCPA prohibits debt collectors from making any false or misleading representations during the collection of a debt or using unfair or unconscionable means to collect a debt.
A debt collector may violate the FDCPA in ways that may be familiar to you if you owe significant debt, such as:
- Calling repeatedly, excessively, and outside of traditional work hours.
- Threatening you with violence or harm.
- Using obscene or profane language.
- Making threats of violence or harm.
- Contacting friends or family members about your debt.
- Misrepresenting the amount of your debt or making misrepresentations about your credit.
- Lying about being attorneys, government representatives, or law enforcement.
- Falsely claiming you’ll be arrested, or that your property will be confiscated.
- Threatening that they will take unavailable or inappropriate legal action against you.
- Attempting to collect interest, fees, or other charges in addition to the amount you owe, unless the original contract or Texas law permits it.
- Depositing a post-dated check early.
Additionally, debt collectors must affirmatively advise consumers about their identities and the purpose of their communications, as well as provide information and documentation verifying the amount of the debt upon the consumer’s request.
Compensation Available to Consumers Under the FDCPA
Consumers who bring an FDCPA claim for abusive debt collection practices or a debt collector’s failure to follow the law’s other requirements may be entitled to receive the following:
- Statutory damages up to $1,000
- Attorney’s fees and court costs
- Actual damages (such as phone bills)
Want the Calls to Stop? Call Warren & Migliaccio Today.
When your finances are out of control, you can feel like your whole life is out of control as well. When overwhelming debt leads to creditor harassment, it only makes things worse. The North Texas debt resolution attorneys at Warren & Migliaccio can take immediate steps to stop creditors from unfairly harassing you and your family and will work with you to develop a long-term plan for a fresh start that can tackle your debt, restore your credit rating, and rebuild your finances.
Please call Warren & Migliaccio today at (888) 584-9614 to arrange for your free initial consultation. We look forward to serving you.