For decades leading up to 1977, American consumers were at a severe disadvantage when it came to dealing with debt collection agencies. Third party debt collectors harassed and intimidated consumers by implementing a wide variety of overly aggressive debt collection tactics.
Responding to growing consumer anger, the United States Congress wrote into law what many legal experts refer to as the consumer Bill of Rights.
According to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), bill collectors are no longer allowed to harass and intimidate consumers into paying off outstanding credit card and personal loan balances.
A debt collection agency such as Consumer Portfolio Services, Inc. cannot call you at odd hours of the day or make frequent phone calls that harass you on the job. Moreover, the FDCPA prohibits third party debt collectors from making false statements regarding consumer debts.
What False Statements Could a Third Party Debt Collector Make?
You probably have heard of the term “double dipping.” For bill collectors, double dipping represents the illegal practice of trying to get consumers to pay off a debt that has already been paid off.
Some debt collection agencies try to take advantage of consumers that do not maintain accurate personal financial records. Another lie told by some third party debt collectors is claiming you owe money on a credit card or personal loan account that is the responsibility of someone else.
If a bill collector tries to tell you there is not a statute of limitations on the collection of consumer debts, then the company has made a false statement that violates the FDCPA.
A debt collection agency also is in legal hot water, if it threatens to sue you or garnish your wages after the statute of limitations for collecting consumer debts has expired. You should never tolerate the actions of a bill collector that reports inaccurate information to any of the three primary credit reporting agencies.
How to Fight Back against Consumer Portfolio Services, Inc.
For false statements cases, you have to prove a third party debt collector issued false statements and that the false statements were “material” in how you came to personal finance decisions.
In 2018, the United States court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit decreed it is now necessary for consumers to link the false statements made by a bill collector with the ability to evaluate different financial options.
You have to show Consumer Portfolio Services, Inc. made false statements that adversely impacted your ability to make prudent personal financial decisions.
Qualifying for Monetary Damages
After conducting a review of your case, a licensed FDCPA lawyer might decide to file a lawsuit in civil court against Consumer Portfolio Services, Inc. Your attorney will have to present convincing evidence the debt collection agency made false statements regarding your debt.
If a judge rules in your favor, you can seek monetary damages that include statutory damages not exceeding $1,000. Statutory damages cover every violation of the FDCPA committed by the same bill collector.
Never permit a debt collection agency to get away with making false statements. Schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced FDCPA lawyer to learn more about the false statements provision of the federal consumer protection law.
*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 Consumer Portfolio Services, Inc., or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to compensation.