The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) was enacted to protect consumers from deceptive debt collection practices. If a debt collector or a collection agency collects debt in a deceptive or harassing manner, you can pursue legal action.
The FDCPA is very detailed, and your rights are protected. There are limitations regarding what a collection agency can and cannot do and how they must proceed with trying to collect the debt. If the FDCPA is violated, you can sue a collection agency.
How Can A Collection Agency Add Interest or Fees?
Your agreement for the original debt should clearly state how interest and fees accrue. The collection agency cannot just up and change that process.
If your debt is still being charged interest when it is transferred to a collection agency, the collection agency can try to collect that amount on top of the original debt. The collection agency can recover the fees or charges you agreed to in the original agreement for the debt.
If your debt agreement allows the collection agency or original creditor to bill you for the reasonable charges that are associated with debt collection, such as attorney’s fees, court costs, and other legal fees, they can do that.
The collection agency cannot add additional interest or fees if the agreement does not allow it. In that case, the FDCPA has been violated and you can sue a collection agency for adding interest or a fee that was not agreed to in the contract.
How Can I Sue A Collection Agency for Adding Interest or A Fee?
If your original agreement does not allow for the addition of interest or fees and the collection agency has been adding them, the FDCPA has been violated. You can sue a collection agency for FDCPA violations in small claims court or in state court.
If you file a lawsuit in small claims court, you are limited on the amount you can recover. You can, however, represent yourself in small claims court.
You can sue a collection agency in state court with the help of an attorney. In state court, you can get up to $1,000 in statutory damages, plus actual damages, and attorney’s fees and legal expenses.
While the state court lawsuit might be more complicated, you can recover more for your damages.
Consult With A FDCPA Attorney
If you are being harassed and threatened by a collection agency, consult with a FDCPA attorney. With the help of a lawyer, you might be able to sue a collection agency for adding interest or a fee that was not permitted in the original agreement.
You have nothing to lose, as your attorney can recover his or her fees and expenses through the lawsuit.
Complete the Free Case Evaluation Form today, so a FDCPA attorney practicing in your area can review the details of your case and determine if you can sue a collection agency for violating the FDCPA.