If you have fallen behind on paying your bills and Commonwealth Financial System has contacted you regarding one of the bills, you should know that there are several legal resources that can ensure the debt collection agency tows the legal line.
This is especially true if the third party debt collector harasses or intimidates you by calling your home landline at all hours of the day or by issuing threats to have you arrested for not paying off your debt.
Despite the fact there are no debtor prisons in the United States, this fact does not deter some bill collectors from issuing outrageous threats that include arresting consumers.
Fortunately, a groundbreaking federal consumer protection law forbids the once acceptable practice of using overly aggressive debt collection tactics to coerce consumers into taking care of their financial obligations.
Written into the federal legal code on September 20, 1977, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) makes it illegal for Commonwealth Financial System to harass and intimidate consumers. One important provision of the FDCPA addresses the illegal debt collection technique of issuing threats.
What Types of Threats does the FDCPA Ban?
When the United States Congress wrote the threats provision into the FDCPA, the primary goal of the legal language was to ban direct threats.
The FDCPA does not address the legality of implied threats, which is soft language used to encourage consumers into taking action, without specifically mentioning what will happen if debts remain unpaid. Direct threats include seizing private property to liquidate the property into cash.
Commonwealth Financial System cannot threaten to contact a third party regarding your debt. Many third party debt collectors threaten to contact third parties regarding consumer debt in attempts to shame consumers into taking care of the personal financial responsibilities.
You also should report any type of threat that either suggests the use of violence or is an outright threat to harm you physically.
Do You Qualify for Just Compensation?
The FDCPA created a two tier legal document. The first tier spells out what constitutes illegal debt collection tactics, such as using deception to trick consumers into paying off credit card and personal loan accounts.
For the second tier, the FDCPA has established legal remedies for consumers to use that make debt collection agencies pay for their illegal behavior. For every violation of the FDCPA, a consumer is eligible to file a claim for statutory damages.
The one-time claim for statutory damages is capped at $1,000. If you can prove the illegal debt collection tactics used by a bill collector caused you physical and/or emotional duress, you might qualify to receive monetary damages.
The FDCPA does not limit the amount of money rewarded for monetary damages.
The Value of an FDCPA Attorney
Most debt collection agencies work closely with accomplished lawyers to ensure the companies have enough legal representation to make consumers pay off outstanding debts.
A licensed consumer protection lawyer who has successfully litigated numerous FDCPA lawsuits will even the legal playing field with Commonwealth Financial System.
Schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced FDCPA lawyer to learn more about the illegality of a third party debt collector issuing threats to consumers.
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*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 Commonwealth Financial System, or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to compensation.