The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is a federal law which proscribes and restricts a number of actions that debt collectors, collection agencies and lawyers can take if they are pursuing you on a debt. Debt collectors, collection agencies and lawyers are not allowed to harass you or abuse you in trying to collect a debt. Specifically, they cannot harass, oppress, or abuse anyone, they cannot threaten use of violence or other criminal means, and they cannot use profane or other abusive language in order to collect a debt.
The other way debt collectors, collection agencies and lawyers will try to collect a debt from you is by writing a letter. They are required to specify certain things in what is called a thirty day validation notice. What they do is give you thirty days to dispute the debt. If you do dispute the debt or do not believe you owe it or you have no idea what it is they are talking about, you have an absolute right to refuse to pay the debt and ask the collector to cease and stop all communication with you. In order to stop communication, you can write a letter back to the debt collector that says you dispute the debt, that you refuse to pay the debt and that they are not allowed to contact you anymore either by phone or in writing. You will need to write it in your own writing, preferably by computer or handwriting if it is very legible, and please make sure you sign it, date it and mail it to the debt collector, collection agency, or lawyer by certified mail, return receipt requested.
Please make sure you keep a copy of all communications that you both receive and send and that you also keep a log to keep track of any communication you get, especially after you send this dispute letter. Also, please ensure that you keep a copy of the certified mail, return receipt acknowledgment so that you can verify the debt collector, collection agency or lawyer has received your letter. If you are having difficulty with a debt or your overall financial situation, please contact our office that is most convenient to you to set up a free consultation visit with one of our licensed attorneys. We would be happy to review your situation with you confidentially at your convenience to see what can be done.