If Edward Sloan & Associates is trying to contact you in Texas, the agency must follow specific federal and state laws pertaining to the regulation of debt collection activities.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) prohibits third party debt collectors from abusing and threatening consumers into paying outstanding debts. Debt collectors cannot use deceptive practices to trick consumers into paying delinquent debts as well.
A licensed Texas attorney can help you file a claim against a debt collector that breaks one or more of the provisions written into the FDCPA.
Texas Law and Debt Collection Statute of Limitations
Like most states, Texas enacted a consumer protection law to strengthen the intent of the FDCPA. Passed a few years after the FDCPA went into effect, the Texas Debt Collection Act (TDCA) fills in the legal holes left by the FDCPA.
For example, the FDCPA permits consumers to send by certified mail a cease and desist letter that gives debt collectors 30 days to stop contacting consumers. Another important clause written into the TDCA involves setting the statute of limitations for debt collectors.
Debt collectors must file judgment claims against consumers within four years of the original past due date of a credit account. The TDCA clearly lists the types of debts covered by the statute of limitations, which include personal loans and credit card accounts.
Do Debt Collectors Have the Right to Charge Extra Fees?
Third party debt collectors are known for implementing tactics that cross the line of ethical behavior. After buying original debts from creditors for a few cents on the dollar, many debt collectors like to add fees and interest charges to make more money.
According to Texas Finance Code Section 393.303, third party debt collectors must prove they have the legal power to charge additional fees and interest by presenting evidence in the form of an original credit agreement.
A FDCPA and TDCA attorney can help you determine if legal language exists in the original credit contract that allows for the charging of extra debt collection fees.
Texas Wage Garnishment Law
A third party debt collector must win a judgment in a Texas court to garnish wages for the purpose of collecting a debt. Debt collectors in Texas are limited to the types of income they can garnish. For example, third party debt collectors cannot garnish wages and bank accounts.
Texas law permits the garnishment of alimony, child support, and student loans. The protection of consumer wages gives you the upper hand in negotiating a debt settlement, which a licensed attorney can help you achieve.
An Attorney Can Help You Win a TDCA Lawsuit
Under the TDCA, the Texas Attorney General possesses the legal impetus to punish unscrupulous third party debt collectors. However, you need to hire an attorney to win damages awarded from the filing of a TDCA lawsuit.
Monetary damages in FDCPA and TDCA cases include statutory fines and compensation for actual physical and emotional duress.
*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 Sloan & Associates or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.