The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) was enacted to protect consumers from deceptive debt collection practices. The act has specific guidelines in place for debt collectors. The law involves when a debt collector can contact you, the frequency of contact, the information they must reveal, and the evidence they must provide when you request that the debt be verified. The collection agency must be truthful in their communication with you, so if a collection agency threatens legal action, you can sue them if they are not honest in their approach.
Threatened? They Must Mean It
According to the FDCPA, debt collectors cannot make idle threats. If a collection agency threatens legal action, you can sue them if they are misrepresenting the situation. If they do not plan to sue you for the past due debt, or if the statute of limitations has passed and they cannot sue you to collect the debt, then they are violating the FDCPA. If they threaten to arrest you or come serve you with a warrant at work, they are violating the FDCPA and you can take legal action against them. If a collection agency has threatened you with legal action, you should consult with a FDCPA attorney.
When a Collection Agency Threatens Legal Action
There are a few ways to tell if the collection agency is lying when they threaten you with legal action. Some indicators include:
- The amount of your debt is very small, usually less than $1,000.
- The debt collector doesn’t have an office in your state.
- The collector has threated to sue you for months and they haven’t taken legal action.
Here is another indicator that you will not be sued, and the collection agency is lying:
- The debt collector doesn’t have the authorization of the creditor to sue you. Sometimes you might not know this until litigation has gotten underway by a lawsuit being filed and it is revealed during the discovery process.
The FDCPA also points out there are many veiled or implied threats made by collection agencies that they will sue. Courts have determined the following are FDCPA violations – the collector indicates that they “may” or “can” sue, they claim the debt will be referred to a lawyer for “collections,” or the collector states they are authorized to proceed with legal action against the consumer.
Consult With an FDCPA Attorney About a Collection Agency Threatening Legal Action
If a collection agency threatens legal action, an FDCPA attorney can determine if you can sue them. If they have violated the FDCPA, your attorney will help you get your case in order and file the lawsuit in state court. In state court, you can get the larger award. You can receive $1,000 statutory damages, compensation for actual damages, legal fees, court costs, and attorney’s fees. Complete the Free Case Evaluation Form today to determine how to proceed.