After a long day at work, you come home to find the landline full of messages. Most of the messages are from a debt collection agency, with each message turning increasingly hostile. One of the messages insists you could go to jail for not taking care of a personal debt. The third party debt collector resorted to using overly aggressive debt collection tactics, as well as deceiving you by making a false statement. Fortunately, a longstanding federal consumer protection law prohibits the implementation of deceptive and aggressive debt collection tactics.
Enacted by the United States Congress in 1977, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) makes it illegal for a bill collector such as Constar Financial Services, LLC to contact a third party regarding your debt. Several court decisions have declared that by leaving phone messages, a debt collection agency is indirectly contacting a third party because of the assumption that someone other than you will hear the messages. The FDCPA also bans the practice of issuing false statements to trick consumers into taking action on an outstanding credit card or personal loan account.
What Constitutes a False Statement?
In the example used above, making the claim that you could go to jail for not paying your bills represents a blatant false statement. Never in the history of the United States has anyone gone to jail for falling behind on bills. Another common false statement made by debt collection agencies involves the impersonation of a law firm. Some third party debt collectors want to ensure consumers understand the seriousness of their predicaments by falsely claiming to be attorneys. Although a few law firms provide debt collection services, the vast majority of bill collectors are businesses solely dedicated to collecting delinquent credit card and personal loan balances.
What Should You Do If Constar Financial Services, LLC Makes False Statements?
The FDCPA makes it clear that you do not have to tolerate the false statements made by a debt collection agency like Constar Financial Services, LLC. However, you have to do more than just prove the existence of false statements. According to several recent court decisions, you also have to demonstrate a connection between the false statements issued by a bill collector and the ability to evaluate your personal financial options correctly. In 2018, the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit declared consumers must show the false statements made by a debt collection agency were “material” to how consumers made financial decisions.
Do You Have the Right to File Claim?
The answer is an emphatic yes, as the FDCPA grants consumers the right to file lawsuits that seek monetary damages. Because of the stress and anxiety generated by unlawful debt collection tactics, some consumers might experience physical distress symptoms that include skin rashes and prolonged migraine headaches. The FDCPA allows consumers to seek actual damages that cover the cost of treating physical duress symptoms. The key for proving the presence of physical distress symptoms is to work with a licensed FDCPA lawyer who will conduct a comprehensive review of your case.
Schedule a free initial consultation today with a highly rated FDCPA 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 Constar Financial Services, LLC, or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to compensation.