Have financial problems become so overwhelming that you can no longer pay your bills, causing collection agencies to start calling you? Although this may not be a huge consolation, you are not alone.
A more encouraging fact is that federal law requires debt collectors to treat you with respect when they contact you and penalizes them if they don't.
Your Rights Under the FDCPA
The Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA) was passed in 1977 to protect consumers from being harassed and taken advantage of by collection agency. It applies to third-party debt collectors (which includes attorneys) and provides legal remedies if they subject you to the following:
- Calling you before 8:00 a.m. and after 9:00 p.m. in your time zone
- Demanding amounts that are doubled by ‘service charges’
- Using profane and obscene language
- Calling your cell phone several times per day using an autodialer
- Pretending to be attorneys or police officers
- Discussing the debt with uninvolved third parties like your friends, family, and coworkers
Company Profile: Cawley & Bergmann, LLC
If you are being called by Cawley & Bergmann, LLC, a summary of the company’s history is below.
Cawley & Bergmann, LLC is a debt collection agency located in Fort Lee, New Jersey. It was established in 2010, has fewer than 10 employees, and is managed by Jonathan Cawley.
Researching the company at the PACER website confirms that consumers who believed they were being harassed by Cawley & Bergmann, LLC sued the company for compensation.
Alleged Violations against Cawley & Bergmann, LLC
According to PACER, on or about April 30, 2011, an Arizona consumer sent a registered letter to Cawley & Bergmann, LLC stating the following: “...this letter is your legal and final notice to cease and desist from making contact with us via the telephone.
You are not to contact us at any phone number you have associated with this account now or in the future. You are not to contact any phone number for any reason regarding this account.”
Cawley & Bergmann, LLC signed for and received the letter on May 5, 2011, but allegedly called him on or about September 15, 2011 in an attempt to collect the debt.
Feeling harassed by Cawley & Bergmann, LLC, the consumer hired a lawyer and sued the company for allegedly violating his rights by:
- Ignoring a cease communications letter
- Calling him at an inconvenient time and place
- Using harassing and abusive means to collect a debt
- Misrepresenting the character, amount, or legal status of a debt
- Failing to identify itself as a debt collector in all communications
The matter was later dismissed.
Hire a Consumer Lawyer
The phone numbers for Cawley & Bergmann, LLC are:
If you see any of them on your caller ID when your cell phone rings, Cawley & Bergmann, LLC is trying to reach you. If they ignore a written request to stop contacting you, don’t tolerate their presumption, Make an appointment with a consumer attorney who can file a claim against Cawley & Bergmann, LLC on your behalf.
The FDCPA forces collection agencies that violate its guidelines to compensate the affected consumers financially, so fighting back can be your best option.
Case taken from PACER (pacer.gov). File number is Case 2:11-cv-02006-NVW from the United States District Court for the District of Arizona.
*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 Cawley & Bergmann, LLC or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.