Modeled after the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), the California Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (CFDPA) prohibits third party debt collectors from abusing and threatening consumers, as well as using deceptive tactic to collect debts.
However, the FDCPA gives states legal wriggle room to address issues such as statute of limitations and the amount third part debt collectors can charge in fees and interest.
If Rash Curtis & Associates contacts you concerning a debt, the debt collection firm must follow the guidelines mandated by the (CFDPA). If Rash Curtis & Associates violates one or more provisions of the CFDPA, you have the legal right to hire an attorney and file a claim against the debt collection firm.
Statute of Limitations
California consumers enjoy one of the shortest statute of limitations in the United States for collecting personal debts. Only six states have shorter statute of limitations. Under the CFDPA, third party debt collectors have four years to pursue consumer debt obligations.
The only exception involves the debts owed under oral contracts. For oral contracts, California gives debt collectors two years to collect debts. In California, the statute of limitations for debt collection starts the moment a third party debt collector receives legal permission to collect a debt for an original creditor.
Interest Charges and Other Fees
The CFDPA is clear when it comes to the interest and other fees third party debt collectors can charge for the collection of debts. Debt collectors can charge fees, interest, and surcharges only if the expenses are authorized under the credit agreement that created the debt.
Consumers have the legal right to request debt collectors list every charge and why the charges apply to their debt. A licensed consumer protection law attorney can help you draft a letter that requests an explanation from the debt collector.
Wage Garnishment and the CFDPA
A debt collector can request a wage garnishment order from a court to collect a debt. California law closely follows the guidelines created by the federal government. However, the state ensures consumers have enough money left over to take care of basic living expenses such as food and housing.
This means debt collectors can garnish no more than 25% of your wages or the amount your weekly wage exceeds 40 times the state hourly minimum wage, whichever is the lower amount. With an above average minimum wage, many California consumers fall in the second garnishment category.
Violation of the CFDPA
You have the legal right to contact an attorney if a third party debt collector violates one or more provisions of the CFDPA. The State of California no longer takes legal action against debt collectors, which means consumers must hire licensed consumer protection attorneys to take action against unscrupulous third party debt collectors.
Under the CFDPA, you can recover actual damages from a debt collector. State law also allows for the payment of damages ranging from $100 to $1,000 if a debt collector “willfully and knowingly” violated one or more provisions of the CFDPA.
*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 Rash Curtis & Associates or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.