Understanding Your Legal Rights Under the FDCPA


Have you been receiving harassing phone calls from creditors? Has a debt collection agency threatened to contact your employer unless you pay? As a consumer, you have certain rights. In fact, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) was specifically enacted to protect you against abusive debt collection practices. While creditors also have certain rights, like the right to inquire about outstanding debts, they are legally obligated to abide by a strict set of rules when conducting their business.

According to the FDCPA, a debt collector is prohibited from engaging in any conduct that could be seen as harassing, abusive or deceptive when inquiring about a debt. This means that they cannot contact you outside of certain hours, repeatedly contact you for the purpose of harassment or misrepresent the amount of debt that you owe – among several other restrictions. If a debt collector or creditor violates your rights under this federal act, you would not be without legal recourse.

Under the FDCPA, debt collectors are strictly prohibited from:

  • Contacting you outside the hours of 8 a.m. and 9 p.m.
  • Using abusive or profane language when speaking to you
  • Revealing the nature of your debt to a third party
  • Contacting you directly if you have hired an attorney
  • Reporting false information on your credit report
  • Publishing your personal information on a "bad debt" list
  • Contacting you at work if you have told them not to

What happens if a creditor violates my rights?

If you are the victim of creditor harassment, it is important to understand that you have rights. With the help of a bankruptcy lawyer in Phoenix, you can hold the offending debt collector accountable through a private lawsuit. By filing a lawsuit in state or federal court against a third-party debt collector, you would have the chance to recover damages in an amount up to $1,000, plus reasonable attorney fees. The FDCPA is a strict liability law, which means that you do not need to prove that you have suffered actual damages in order to collect statutory damages.

Leonard V. Sominsky, ESQ., PC is Here to Help

Do you believe that your rights were violated by a creditor or debt collection agency? Don't wait to get in touch with a bankruptcy attorney at Leonard V. Sominsky, ESQ., PC. We have been helping consumers throughout Phoenix, AZ and all surrounding areas since 2000, which means that we are well-equipped to advise you on all of your legal options. When you contact our office today, you can even take advantage of a free consultation. Call now to find out what we can do for you!