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Yesterday we told you about a woman suing -- debt collection agency because she says the company is calling or twenty times a day.
Using FaceBook to harass her and her -- so what are your rights as a consumer when it comes to debt and debt collectors.
Joining me now -- John Alzheimer credit dot com consumer education president John great seeing you sir.
Thanks -- astronomy are right so what can any debt collectors not -- you what what are the rules.
While the rules are defined by the fair debt collection practices act -- the FDCPN.
It's a funny law what they're really long Akron.
I hear some of the things that -- debt collectors cannot do they cannot call you at all hours of the night -- have to localize their phone calls.
Between 8 in the morning at 9 o'clock at night in New York time -- -- thank you play the hole more are eastern time were on Pacific time game what some of them used you.
They also cannot make what are referred to as dire a -- They can't threaten -- to go to jail that can't threatened that the government's gonna come after you they cannot they cannot threaten those things.
Especially because they had no control from all of those things they also cannot bring to sue you.
And -- -- out the intention of doing so.
They also cannot collect -- debt it has been discharged in bankruptcy that's a clear violation of the FTC UK.
They also cannot.
In general -- last year and I know that's a little bit comical because.
The -- trying to get money out of somebody who doesn't want to pay or can't pay -- doesn't actually -- the money.
Isn't it's it is and of itself are collapsing type of events on those types of cases.
You run into the issue he said she fed is what I'm doing harassing.
Or is it -- -- her house.
And of course if you pay something that you don't have to you're not legally obligated to pay you can -- age that debt.
And then suddenly -- again in some states correct.
-- -- aging is a little bit tricky -- there.
Creating a -- if there's -- -- -- different definitions to re -- you can certainly we age eight judgment once every ten years and then the consumer continues to -- However -- You cannot continue to create a collection.
For the purposes of -- blanketing of the amount of time that it can be reported on your credit files seven years is the limit.
Period dying they cannot create that collection and discontinued at seven.
Your period in our love and try to do it yeah.
I mean this really begs the question what do -- do appear being harassed by a debt collector is there anywhere to turn.
Yeah there's there's actually a lot of places to earn about a thousand new UFD sepia lawsuits are filed every single month.
Which means we're gonna get to about 121000 this year which is 3000 more -- -- last year so consumers are fighting back.
Do against abusive debt collectors.
There is an entire army out of consumer advocate attorneys who are looking for those types of cases some of them willing to take them on contingency.
And just take their piece of the -- from the the impending settlement.
-- look most of these cases -- long before they make it to court outside been involved in 71.
Out of any thought of courtroom.
Three times the vast majority -- -- some argue they -- your personal cases right.
Johnnie where ever you want your help another people out.
I don't -- anybody I -- I'll get a good day I -- expert witness for that back I think it's you and you know what you can do Jerry if UK and that.
Demi and in writing the task begun arriving at a collection agency stops contacting you -- what they have to stop contacting you.
It doesn't mean that they can stop.
Reporting it to the credit bureaus and it certainly doesn't mean that they cannot see that they won't -- you.
But they can you can stop that phone -- twenty times a day but that doesn't necessarily.
You know -- the collection and abide well -- I have to tell you that this gets pretty bad if you do it for people who never been through this the reports of how bad the harassment can get.
People who may be -- immigrants to this country are told they're gonna be deported.
They're all kinds of threats to get thrown around it really gets pretty nasty do you think the rules go far enough.
I'll be real lot of.
It's fifty BF DC PA is really really top it is a very it it's got significant heat and I.
Most collection agencies are terrified of the FDCPA.
And I've been told off the record by collection agency owners.
That every single time they call -- consumer to attempt to collect a debt.
They realize that there's the possibility.
Of an FT CP a lawsuit being filed so they're terrified -- it let me let me give you an example Jerry just to put this in perspective.
At the consumer is called.
200 times in a year from a collection agency is that -- last night.
One side it's gonna say absolutely it's perhaps it 200 times a year that's crazy the other side's gonna say wait a minute that's -- -- once per day.
So I think there there's -- glass half empty glass half full perspective that have to be taken from both side.
I think the trick really is somewhere down the metal.
That the FT CPA does protect consumers however.
We all recognize that he acknowledged that there -- in -- some abusive collectors.
Who get their collection agency employers and a lot of hot water because they do stupid things like tell people we're gonna get reported.
I think if you want more details of the place to go is the federal trade commission's website FTC dot.
They actually outline all the details alive to hear about it and John we care about you thanks for helping us out it was a great segment appreciate your time.
We'll be right back thank --
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