If job loss or reduced earning ability cause your monthly debt payments to go into arrears, those accounts may eventually be turned over to a third party collection agency. According to the Federal Trade Commission, these collectors are not always professional when dealing with consumers: when you don’t pay them immediately, they may resort to pressure tactics and bullying. Don’t be railroaded: if a debt collector is harassing you, they are breaking the law.
Your Rights Under the FDCPA
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, or FDCPA, protects indebted consumers from harassment by third-party debt collectors. Although debt collectors may legally contact you about a claim they have been assigned to collect, they may not use methods like the following to collect a debt.
- Using profane and obscene language
- Calling you at your workplace when they know that your employer doesn’t permit you to take such calls
- Demanding an amount that is not supported by law or the original debt agreement
- Calling you outside of the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. your time
- Making threats they cannot legally carry out or have no intention of carrying out
- Discussing the debt with any third parties except you, your spouse, and your attorney
Company Profile: Regional Acceptance Corporation
If you are being called by Regional Acceptance Corporation, information about the company is below.
Regional Acceptance Corporation is an auto finance company located in Greenville, North Carolina. It was established in 1978, has 500 to 1000 employees across 31 regional business centers and three customer service centers, and is managed by its President, William C. Jones. Litigation files archived at the PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) website confirm that consumers who felt they were being harassed by Regional Acceptance Corporation decided to confront the company in court.
Alleged Violations against Regional Acceptance Corporation
According to PACER, in April 2011 Regional Acceptance Corporation started trying to collect a consumer debt that a Michigan couple owed for a motorcycle. The Parkers later complained that the company called them on their cell phones several times a day.
On or about May 16, 2011, one of them finally asked Regional Acceptance Corporation to stop calling him while he was working. When the calls continued, he finally said, “I thought told you to stop calling me while I am working?” The collector allegedly responded by saying, “We will send someone there.”
When he allegedly received three calls on June 1, 2011, all of them by 11:30 a.m., he decided enough was enough. Feeling harassed by Regional Acceptance Corporation, the couple hired a consumer attorney and sued the company for allegedly violating the FDCPA in the following ways:
- Calling them at a time and place known to be inconvenient
- Harassing them by telephone
- Using harassing and abusive means to collect a debt
The matter was later dismissed.
Hire an FDCPA Attorney
The phone numbers for Regional Acceptance Corporation are:
If any of these numbers appear on your caller ID when the phone rings, it means that you are being called by Regional Acceptance Corporation about a debt they are trying to collect. If they call you at work and other inconvenient places and refuse to stop on request, hire a consumer attorney who can help you seek compensation in court. If you decide to file a claim against Regional Acceptance Corporation, you could potentially be awarded $1,000 per violation as well as attorney’s fees, court costs, and any actual damages, so don’t hesitate to stand up for yourself. The company could end up owing you money in the end.
*Case taken from PACER (www.pacer.gov). File number is Case 2:11-cv-12467-NGE-LJM from the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.
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 Regional Acceptance Corporation, or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.