No matter how financially responsible you try to be, there may come a time when one of your debts go into collection. Perhaps you lost your job, became too sick to work, or needed to pay emergency house or car repairs first. Whatever the reason, it’s important to know that when debt collectors start contacting you, there are rules they must follow.
Your Rights Under the FDCPA
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, or FDCPA, is a consumer protection law that was passed in 1977 after thousands of consumers complaints about threats and harassment from third-party debt collectors.
The FDCPA makes it illegal for collectors to use abusive or deceptive means to collect a debt, so if the party you’re dealing with does any of the following, they are breaking the law.
- Swearing, calling you names, and using profane language
- Telling you that you will go to jail, lose your kids,etc., if you don’t pay
- Demanding amounts that exceed the original debt
- Calling at inconvenient times, such as before 8:00 a.m. and after 9:00 p.m. in the consumer’s time zone
- Contacting you at work after being informed that the employer does not permit such calls
- Reporting false information to the credit bureaus
Company Profile: Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc.
If you are being called by Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc., information about the company is below.
Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc. is a debt collection company located in Rockford, Illinois. It was established in 1908, has approximately 37 employees, and is managed by its President, Richard L. Brown.
Records archived at the PACER (Public Access to Court Electronic Records) website confirm that consumers who believed they were being harassed by Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc. challenged the collection efforts in court.
Alleged Violations against Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc.
According to PACER, on or before October 15, 2015, Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc. started trying to collect a consumer debt from a Missouri resident. He claimed that the company called him continuously on his cell phone.
He had never given them permission to do so, and that the phone calls were delivered using an automatic telephone dialing system or an artificial or prerecorded voice. He also alleged that one call came in at 7:27 a.m.
Feeling harassed by Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc., he hired a consumer attorney and sued the company for allegedly violating the FDCPA in the following ways:
- Using the telephone to harass him
- Calling him before 8:00 a.m. in his time zone
The matter was later dismissed.
Hire an Attorney
The phone number for this collection firm are:
If you see either number on your caller ID when the phone rings, it means that you are being called by Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc.. If they persist in using an automatic dialer to call you, or try to contact you outside of FDCPA-approved hours, hire a consumer attorney.
If you file a claim against Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc. and win, you could potentially be awarded $1,000 per violation as well as attorney's fees, court costs, and any actual damages. When a debt collector breaks the law, consumers have the right to seek compensation accordingly.
*Case taken from PACER (www.pacer.gov). File number is Case 4:16-cv-01173-RK from the United States District Court for the Western District of Missouri, Western Division.
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 Rockford Mercantile Agency, Inc., or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.