When the United States Congress enacted the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) in 1977, states such as California passed consumer protection laws that filled in the legal blanks left by the FDCPA. The FDCPA prohibits third party debt collectors from abusing and threatening consumers.
Debt collectors also must refrain from implementing deceptive techniques in attempts to get consumers to pay off delinquent debts. California legislators passed the California Debt Collection Practices Act (CFDCPA) to set the legal standard for debt collectors when it comes to the statue of limitations for collecting debts, as well as how state law handles requests for wage garnishments.
If California Business Bureau has contacted you in regards to collecting a debt, you should consult with a licensed attorney who has considerable experience handling FDCPA and CFDCPA cases. Working with an attorney can help you file acclaim against California Business Bureau.
What is the Statute of Limitations for Collecting a Debt in California?
The FDCPA left a few legal voids for states to fill, including the definition of the statute of limitations for collecting consumer debts. California has adopted one of the shortest statute of limitations by giving third party debt collectors just four years to pursue consumer debt collections.
The four year statute of limitations does not apply to oral contracts, which gives debt collectors two years to collect outstanding debts. California has set the start date for the statute of limitations to kick in on the day a debt collector receives permission from the original creditor to collect a delinquent consumer debt.
The CFDCPA and Additional Fees
Debt collectors have earned the reputation for hiding additional fees into the collection of outstanding debts. The CFDCPA addresses additional fees by allowing debt collectors to charge fees and interest, but only if the additional charges were written in the contract agreed to by the original creditor.
If a contract issued by an original creditor does not contain clear language specifying fees and interest, a third party debt collector cannot attempt to collect additional charges.
When you hire an experienced FDCPA and CFDCPA attorney, you draft a letter requesting a debt collector itemize each fee tacked on a debt collection bill.
California Wage Garnishment Law
In California, a debt collector must win a judgment from a court to garnish consumer wages. The state allows debt collectors that win judgments to garnish 25% of disposable income or the amount calculated by multiplying 40 times the federal minimum wage, whichever is the lesser amount.
For example, if the federal minimum wage is $9 and your weekly disposable income is $1,000, a debt collector can garnish $250.
Speak with an Attorney Today
Despite the passage of the FDCPA and the CFDCPA, many debt collectors continue to violate state and federal law in the collection of consumer debts. A licensed consumer protection law attorney can help you fight back against California Business Bureau by filing a lawsuit that asks for monetary damages.
*Disclaimer: The content of this article serves only to provide information and should not be constructed as legal advice. If you file a claim against California Business Bureau or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.