If Harris & Harris Ltd. or a similar third-party collection agency has been harassing you, you may not be sure about where to turn for help. Frankly, you may feel nervous about even asking for help.
Like many people dealing with financial difficulties, a part of you may feel that you deserve the poor treatment you’ve been receiving.
This kind of thinking is a trap. Nobody deserves to be bothered, and if any third-party collection agency has been bothering you, it’s time to contact an FDCPA attorney.
Know Your Rights
There is hope for respite for victims of harassment from third-party collectors. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is a federal law enacted in 1977 that protects consumers from a wide range of aggressive and/or unscrupulous behavior. Some of the prohibited behaviors include:
- Leaving multiple voicemails or making your phone ring repeatedly
- Threatening to seize your property
- Using profane language in communications
- Calling you before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. in your time zone
As you can imagine, this list isn’t exhaustive. This means that the best way to determine whether or not the behavior you’ve been experiencing falls under the FDCPA is by talking to an attorney. An attorney can help you decide what steps you should take, such as filing a claim.
Going to Court with Harris & Harris Ltd.
The idea of filing a claim against a collection agency can seem opaque and scary, but the process unfolds in a straightforward way. Once you’ve filed your claim, Harris & Harris Ltd. will be served notice, which means that the agency will be served with a document that contains a complaint and a summons.
The complaint explains why the company is being brought to court, and the summons tells Harris & Harris Ltd. when to show up.
Now that you know when to appear in court, find a way to reliably get there early. Shooting to get there early will help give you a cushion in case of traffic or an accident. Showing up late to court is one of the best ways to leave a bad impression, and there is no reason to do that if you can avoid it.
If you’re feeling antsy the day-of, remember that you won’t go to jail for not being able to pay your bills.
Preparing for Your Court Appearance
Your attorney will be an integral part of preparing for your court appearance; having an attorney is one of the best ways to increase your chances of a successful outcome. The first task that the two of you will tackle is gathering evidence.
This could come in the form of a credit report that changed as a result of false information that the agency reported, or a recorded phone call where an agent used profane language. Follow your attorney’s lead, and dig deep in your correspondence to find helpful leads.
Your attorney will also help you prepare for the questions that you’ll be asked in court. Stay engaged with this preparation, because it doesn’t just improve your chances of a successful outcome-- it will also make you feel much more confident during your day in court.
Talk to an Attorney
It can be tough to ask for help. But in this case, hiring an attorney could be life-changing. The harassment that you’ve been experiencing will finally end, and you could even get financial compensation for each violation. You’ll be able to return to your normal life; the journey starts with talking to an attorney.
*Disclaimer: The content of this article serves only to provide information and should not be construed as legal advice. If you file a claim against Harris & Harris Ltd., or any other party, you may not be entitled to any compensation.