Is Ethan and Associates calling you? Here's what you need to know.
When you’re in financial trouble and struggling to make ends meet, an already-stressful situation is made worse when debt collectors start calling and rudely demanding that you pay, or else.
Sometimes you get so upset that you wonder if personal bankruptcy is your only option to stop these harassing and abusive communications, when in reality the law is on your side.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, or FDCPA, regulates what debt collectors may say and do when attempting to collect a debt.
It is a consumer protection law that makes it illegal to use collection tactics like the following:
- Using profane or obscene language
- Calling you at unreasonable and inconvenient times, such as early in the morning and late at night
- Threatening you with a lawsuit when the company has no intention of launching one
- Contacting you after you have retained legal counsel with regards to the debt
- Calling you at work after you’ve told them that your employer doesn’t allow such calls
- Demanding high amounts inflated by service ‘fees’.
Although using these approaches and others like them is illegal, many debt collectors still employ them because they work: scared consumers pay up to make the late night phone calls and rudely-worded letters stop.
Alleged Violations against Ethan & Associates, Inc*
Ethan & Associates, Inc is a collection agency located in Mandeville, Louisiana. It was established in 1998, has a small staff of under 20 employees, and collects consumer debt throughout the country.
A search of the records on file at the PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) website indicate that Ethan & Associates, Inc has been sued for alleged FDCPA violations.
In or around 2012, a New York resident began receiving calls from Ethan & Associates, Inc about a debt he allegedly owed.
He later claimed that collectors left voicemail messages on his answering machine that did not identify them as debt collectors or provide the legal name of the company they represented. He said that the messages sounded pre-scripted and pre-recorded.
Suspecting that Ethan & Associates, Inc was doing this to a lot of consumers, he hired a consumer attorney and filed a lawsuit accusing the agency of the following FDCPA violations:
- Leaving messages that did not meaningfully disclose the caller’s identity
- Misrepresenting the status of the debt
- Using false and deceptive means to collect a debt
- Failure to identify itself as a debt collection agency in the initial communication
The matter was later dismissed.
The phone numbers below are all associated with Ethan & Associates, Inc:
If either of these numbers appear on your caller ID, a debt collector is trying to contact you about a debt you allegedly owe. If they leave messages that fail to identify them as a debt collectors trying to collect a debt, see a consumer attorney.
The FDCPA requires total transparency in all communications with consumers, and you could be awarded $1,000 per FDCPA violation, as well as court costs, attorney fees, and any actual damages for stress and / or embarrassment.
Never forget that even if you owe money, you still have rights, and fighting for them could pay off.
*Case taken from PACER (www.pacer.gov). File number is 1:13-cv-01607-DLI-JO from United States District Court, Eastern District of New York.
Disclaimer: The content of this article serves only to provide information and should not be construed as legal advice. If you file a claim against Ethan & Associates, Inc or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.