Illegal Debt Collection Actions

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Illegal Debt Collection Actions

beatdebt-info_logo_swordThe following actions and debt collection strategies are ILLEGAL. If you are being harassed by debt collectors then you may be able to seek damages according to the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act.


Debt Collectors Cannot:


  • A debt collector calls you at work and knows that it is inconvenient or that your employer forbids it.
  • A debt collector calls you before 8:00 a.m. or after 9:00 p.m. in your time zone.
  • A debt collector makes an excessive number of phone calls to annoy or harass you.
  • A debt collector knows that an attorney, whose contact information is known or is easy to locate, represents you and the debt collector continues to contact you.
  • A debt collector tells a person other than you, your spouse, or your attorney that you owe money. (If you are a minor, the debt collector can tell your parents or guardians about the debt.) Debt collectors can only communicate with other people to obtain contact information about you.
  • A debt collector misrepresents the amount, character, or legal status of a debt.
  • A debt collector gives others credit information about you that is false, or should be known to be false.
  • A debt collector fails to honor your dispute or cease communication rights.
  • A debt collector threatens to take your property or garnish your wages when this action would not be legal or the debt collector does not actually intend to do it. Your property cannot be taken and your wages cannot be garnished without a court order (judgment).
  • A debt collector uses, or threatens to use, violence or any other illegal means to harm you, your family, your reputation, or your property.
  • A debt collector uses profane or obscene language when communicating with you.
  • A debt collector threatens you with criminal prosecution or implies that you have committed a crime. Debt and credit issues are matters of civil law, not criminal law.
  • A debt collector tricks you into accepting charges for collect calls, telegrams, a C.O.D., etc.
  • A debt collector cashes, or threatens to cash, a post-dated check before the date written on the check, if the check is post-dated by five days or more.
  • A debt collector does not give three to 10 days advance notice before cashing a check that is post-dated by five days or more.
  • A debt collector claims to be an attorney or sends a letter made to look like it is from an attorney (unless the debt collector really is an attorney).
  • A debt collector sends a letter that is made to look like a government or court document when it isn’t.
  • A debt collector sends a government or court document that is not recognizable as such.
  • A debt collector threatens any action against you that is not legally feasible or that the debt collector does not intend to take.


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