It is one of the communication technologies that most of us have both love and hate. We are talking about voicemail. The upside is you get to hear important messages from friends, family members, and professional peers. On the other hand, you might find a debt collection agency leaving you a nasty message about paying off a long standing consumer debt.
It can be stressful when you receive a phone call from a debt collection agency such as Harris and Harris Ltd. It can be a downright panic attack if the phone call is left on your voicemail system. The reason for the additional anxiety is because someone close to you might discover your financial woes. Shame and embarrassment are powerful debt collection weapons. Many third party debt collectors have no shame when it comes to leaving voicemails.
You are Protected by a Powerful Consumer Protection Law
In response to growing consumer complaints, the United States Congress passed the groundbreaking Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) back in 1977. Under the FDCPA, bill collectors are not permitted to use previously legal debt collection tactics. A third party debt collector cannot use abusive language in an attempt to intimidate you into paying off a delinquent credit card or a personal loan balance. The FDCPA also prohibits bill collectors from using deception to trick consumers into paying off debts. Deception can include impersonating a law enforcement official and demanding payment for a debt that you have already paid off.
Voicemails and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
Although much of the focus on the FDCPA involves harassing and intimidating debt collection practices, the consumer protection law also addresses issues such as debt collection agencies not identifying themselves when making phone calls to consumers. Moreover, a third party debt collector is prohibited from sharing your debt information with another person or company. Consult with a licensed FDCPA attorney to determine if the voicemails left by Harris and Harris, Ltd. have violated the FDCPA. It is incredibly hard for a bill collector to leave a voice message without violating one or more provisions of the FDCPA.
When Debt Collection Agency Voicemails Get Ugly
Most third party debt collectors are highly motivated to collect delinquent consumer debts. You can expect a bill collector such as Harris and Harris, Ltd. to leave voice messages until you return one of the phone calls. You should know the FDCPA bans repeated phone calls, so having a time stamped voicemail system will go a long way towards proving the debt collection agency violated the FDCPA by repeatedly calling you at home or at work.
Work with a Licensed FDCPA Lawyer
Since leaving a voicemail can violate the FDCPA, it is imperative that you contact an experienced consumer protection attorney who specializes in litigating FDCPA cases. Your lawyer will thoroughly examine the evidence in your case to determine if the evidence is worthy enough to warrant the filing of a lawsuit in civil court. Debt collection agencies come to court accompanied by the highest level of legal counsel, so it is important to have an experienced FDCPA lawyer on your side.
*Disclaimer: The content of this article serves only to provide information and should not be constructed as legal advice. If you file a claim against Harris and Harris, Ltd. or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.