Collection Action Attorneys in Sacramento, CA
Debt is an enormous national concern, and collection is a major contributor to the fear associated with carrying debt subject to collection. Collectors stand to make enormous profits, and the potential for easy money has given rise to the collection industry, which uses every advantage afforded by modern technology to aid their efforts and turn as much profit as possible.
Some of these debt collection firms practice malicious tactics to maximize cash flow—they even sometimes violate their targets’ rights. A Sacramento collection action attorney that understands the legal reach of debt collectors is crucial for those holding an amount subject to collection or believe it to be. Collectors may even attempt to gather amounts a borrower legally cleared, relying on the ignorance or confusion of these individual to pay unnecessarily.
An experienced collection action lawyer in Sacramento, CA will help debtors stay safe from some of the more malicious tactics these individuals practice to coerce payments. Some examples include:
Harassment and Notification
There are strict guidelines established by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) that clearly outline how and when a collection agency can contact debtors. There are rules for appropriate times for calls to private numbers and the amount of physical mail sent to the borrower. Debt collectors may not use any threatening or profane language, and any type of threat to a person’s well-being or property is illegal.
The debt collection agency must follow specific rules in terms of how it notifies debtors about pending payments. By law, it must also provide specific information, such as the exact amount owed, the name of the creditor, and the process for disputing a debt. A written notice will provide this information as well as contact information for the creditor and billing information for sending payments. Collectors must be completely honest about who they are. They cannot represent themselves as anything but a debt collector.
Debt collectors have, in the past, resorted to threats to coerce payments from debtors. This often included contacting a debtor’s employer to either obtain money or embarrass the worker. Under FDCPA law, debt collection agencies may contact an employer but only to verify employment and the location of the individual. They may also attempt to garnish wages if permitted to as a result of a judgment against a debtor following a court case.
A debt collector may also contact an employer to verify the debtor has medical insurance to cover any relevant bills. Debt collectors must submit inquires to employers in writing, however. Legally, they can only contact employers by other means if they have not received any response after 15 days.
Debt Collection and the FTC
The FDCPA is governed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which tracks and processes complaints against debt collectors. In the past, those complaints have included various types of harassment, threats, and excessive notifications to debtors and their families and other close relations. Debt collectors often persist in their attempts to obtain payments even after they have failed in their obligations, such as forgetting to send required notices or sending them outside of specified timeframes. They also cannot demand payment amounts higher than the minimum required by law.
Carrying a debt subject to collection is stressful for anyone. Having knowledgeable and compassionate legal representation will afford you the peace of mind that comes with knowing you have experts to defend your rights. The Boyd Law Firm in Sacramento has extensive experience with debt collection law, and we know the limits of collectors. Contact us to review your case, and let us advise you on the most effective legal options at your disposal.