Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Overview

Relationships between financial lenders and borrowers often fall into dispute. Many of these disputes arise when a borrower is unable to make payments according to the terms outlined in a lending agreement.

No matter where you stand as a borrower, you are legally protected from creditor harassment and other behavior on the part of creditors. Know your rights and take action with help from the consumer rights lawyers at Johnstone Carroll, LLC.

Our firm is led by attorneys F. Inge Johnstone and Matt Carroll, whose passion for the law is founded in a dedication to helping people. We offer experienced and dedicated counsel to consumers whose rights have been violated in the debt collection process. When you contact our firm, we will help you understand debt collection laws and your rights. We will provide the advocacy you need to achieve a fair result.

Understanding Your Rights As A Borrower And Consumer

Consumer rights protection laws related to debt collections are outlined in the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). The FDCPA regulates the manner in which creditors can contact borrowers and pursue payment of debts. Creditors must be able to clearly show the amount of money a debtor owes, provide proof of ownership of that debt and avoid any harassing or threatening behavior when contacting a debtor.

These regulations often are overlooked by creditors and collection agencies because of the corrupt nature of the debt collection industry. Defaulted debt that creditors are struggling to collect will often be taken over by another entity, like a debt buyer, which then pursues collection for its own benefit. Many times, these organizations engage in illegal collections practices such as:

  • Contacting a consumer who has retained an attorney for debt collections issues
  • Violating the debt collection statute of limitations
  • Calling consumers before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m.
  • Contacting a consumer in a harassing manner (repeatedly or continuously calling in an effort to annoy or harass the individual or using threatening or abusive language to frighten the consumer)
  • Contacting a consumer at his or her workplace after being notified that it is not permitted
  • Misrepresenting the debt or the collector's identity
  • Threatening arrest or legal action that the collector is not actually pursuing
  • Disclosing information about the debt to a third party
  • Publishing bad debt information about the consumer
  • Reporting false information about the debt on a credit report

Filing A Lawsuit Against A Debt Collector

Many borrowers are unaware of their rights in these cases. They believe that because they do in fact owe money to a creditor, the creditor has all of the correct information and is using proper methods to collect the debt. Do not let creditors get away with illegal practices.

If your rights are violated, you can file a lawsuit against the debt collector. If you win, the collector may then have to pay your attorneys fees and you may be awarded damages for what you have gone through.

Do not hesitate to contact our offices in Homewood, Alabama, and arrange a consultation with an experienced Birmingham litigator. We represent clients throughout the state and can be reached online or by telephone at 205-383-1809. We are here to help you.