The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is a federal law that protects all consumers in America from abusive and inappropriate conduct of debt collectors. Most states comply with the FDCPA through the enactment of their own state legislations that typically allow for added consumer protection but basically contains similar provisions as the FDCPA.
In Connecticut, two statutes are enforced, namely, the Creditor’s Collection Practices Act (CCPA) and the Consumer Collection Agencies (CCA).
The Connecticut FDCPA, the CCPA and the CCA
The 2013 Connecticut General Statutes (CGS) applies the FDCPA particularly § 36a-646, which prohibits creditors from the use of fraudulent, harassing, misleading, deceptive and abusive acts or representations in trying to collect debts.
Besides this, the state also has the CCA, which is basically a supplement of the federal FDCPA and applies to the conduct of debt collectors, and the CCPA, which refers to the practices of creditors. Both provide added remedies compared to the federal FDCPA.
Creditors are distinguished from debt collectors. If you have a credit card debt, the creditor is the card company itself while the debt collector is the agency normally contracted by the credit card company to collect your debt for them.
The prohibitions under the CCPA apply only to creditors, which includes among others, the following:
- Contact third parties besides your lawyer or spouse about your debt;
- File legal proceedings outside the correct venue;
- Threaten you with garnishment of wages, repossession of your car or levy of your property is they are unable to legally do so;
- Hire an unlicensed collector to go after your debt.
The CCA, on the other hand, covers collecting agencies. It is very similar to the FDCPA in that it considers this certain conduct as illegal, such as:
- File a lawsuit based on debts they received or purchased from the original creditor;
- Pretend to be lawyers and provide legal advice;
- Mail you documents inferring that you owe a debt;
- Impose fees on top of what is supposed to be paid.
Statutes of Limitation in Connecticut
Many debt collectors attempt to collect debts despite it going beyond the statute of limitation. While this is legal, what is illegal is for them to file a legal case against you or act inappropriately in the pursuit of collecting the debt.
An expired debt simply means that the statute of limitation or the period of time by which a creditor can sue you for your failure to pay your debt has passed.
In Connecticut, debts based on simple, implied or written contract, as well as promissory notes and credit card debts, have a 6-year statute of limitation. Debts that are orally agreed upon, including unsigned memorandums or notes, have a 3 year statute of limitation.
Consult with a Connecticut FDCPA Attorney
However, just as there is an expiry date by which you can be sued for your debt, so is there a statute of limitation by which you can file against creditors and debt collectors who violate the FDCPA in Connecticut.
You can only initiate action to enforce liability before the courts within 1 year from the time the violation transpired. Beyond that, you may no longer file a case.
This is why it is very important that you are informed about your rights based on the consumer laws in Connecticut. However, with the variety of statutes that protect you and the existing legalities that go with them, it could prove confusing.
This is where the role of a Connecticut FDCPA attorney will come in handy. Whether you are a resident of Bridgeport or Litchfield, a licensed FDCPA attorney in Connecticut will be able to assist you as these laws govern the entire state.
Know You Rights via a Free Evaluation
It is very common for consumers to get lost in legalities and the statutes that are supposed to protect them. However, only upon being well-informed about these laws will you be able to invoke your rights and go after abusive debt collectors.
A Free Evaluation is available at your disposal today to help you understand the legal remedies available to you. Upon assessment of your situation, you may decide to immediately be connected to a Connecticut FDCPA attorney to help you.