Moon Twp, PA (PressExposure) June 06, 2009 -- The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act Collection (FDCPA) empowers the consumers with certain rights to deal with collection agencies. As per the FDCPA the debt collectors may not:
1) Call a consumer before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m.
2) Talk to a third party including your family, friends, colleagues, neighbors or employees about the debt. The debt collector can talk to your attorney (if you have one) about the debt.
3) Threaten to initiate legal action unless they are actually planning to do so. In some states, third-party collection agencies may not sue.
4) Threaten to garnish wages, imprisonment or foreclosure of property unless they actually intend to do so. Wage garnishment is not legal in some states, and in others it requires a court order. In many states, property seizure is also not permitted. Thus, it is advisable to check with your state attorney general's office or state consumer protection office to find out what is legal in your state.
5) Threaten you with arrest or jail.
6) Engage in unethical or unprofessional behavior that may mislead, harm or defraud consumers.
7) Use obscene language or racial slurs.
8) Annoy, harass or threaten with repeated calls or letters.
9) Call at work despite knowing that your employers do not like such calls.
10) Misrepresent themselves as attorneys, representatives from a credit bureau or members of law enforcement.
In case you find that the collection agency you are dealing with is in the violation of FDCPA then contact your local state attorney general's office and file a complaint against the agency. You can also register a complaint with the FTC. If you don't want to take the calls from the collection agency then as per the law you can send them a "cease and desist letter." While sending a "cease and desist," include your name, contact address and account number, and notify the company that you do not wish to communicate with them any further.
Send the letter via certified mail with a return receipt request so that you have the evidence that the collection agency received your letter. However, you have to remember that sending a "cease and desist letter" doesn't cancel your debt. The original creditor or the collection agency may even sue you, or the original creditor can simply hire another third-party debt collector.