Being in debt is stressful enough. But if you add the harassment that comes from some third-party collectors, then being in debt can leave you feeling completely deflated and helpless. When third-party collectors are calling you night and day or possibly publicizing your debt to people who are unauthorized to talk about it, the suffering can get to feel like too much.
These collectors have to stop. Not just because their behavior is morally wrong, but also because it’s illegal. The Federal Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) keeps them from engaging in egregious behavior when they attempt to collect a debt. Under the law, third-party collectors are not allowed to call you before 8 a.m. and after 9 p.m. in your time zone, impersonate members of the IRS, threaten you with legal action, or collect an old debt.
There are many other prohibited behaviors under the law. You can get them to finally stop by arming yourself with information and contacting an FDCPA attorney for legal consultation--and possibly representation.
Missouri’s Debt Collection Protections
The FDCPA will most likely provide you with more protection from third-party collectors if you’re a Missouri resident. That being said, there are some unique components of debt collection law within the state.
In Missouri, the statute of limitations for written agreements is ten years, which is longer than many other states. This means that a debt collector may not collect on that debt after that point. For verbal agreements, the statute of limitations is only six years.
The FDCPA Protects You
There are a number of actions that third-party collectors are not allowed to take under the FDCPA. Third-party collectors are not allowed to do any of the following when attempting to collect a debt:
- Make false statements or threats
- Impersonate a member of the IRS
- Ask you to pay more than you should based on the initial agreement
- Make your phone ring repeatedly
- Try to collect a debt that you’ve already paid
There are even more actions that are banned under the FDCPA. Look into what your rights are under the law, and then contact an FDCPA attorney to find out if you have a viable claim.
Talk to An Attorney Today
There is no way to regain the time that you’ve spent avoiding debt collectors and living in fear. Unfortunately, they have stolen that time from you. However, you still have the chance to reshape your future and get your life back from them. The only way to make these third-party collectors stop is by knowing your rights, standing up for yourself, and fighting back.
One of the most effective ways to do that is by hiring an FDCPA attorney. That attorney will be able to gather evidence for your case and get the harassment to stop. Additionally, winning a claim could mean netting $1,000 per FDCPA violation. The financial compensation will never be able to erase what those collectors did to you, but it can help you regain a handle on your future.