You think the debt collection agency hounding you about an outstanding credit card or a personal loan account has finally given up pursuit. That is, until you come home one night to find a scathing voicemail left on your home landline.
What should I do in response to the overly aggressive voicemail?
Receiving a phone call of any kind from a third party debt collector can be highly upsetting. Coming home to hear a message from a bill collector can turn your life upside down because one or more members of your family heard the voicemail. Fortunately, a nearly 50-year old consumer protection law protects you against debt collection agencies that leave voicemails.
Voicemails and Federal Consumer Protection Law
In response to consumer outcry resonating in the nation’s capital, the United States Congress passed the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Under the FDCPA, numerous debt collection tactics that were considered legally valid before 1977 are now illegal. Consumers are especially vulnerable to harassing and intimidating debt collection practices.
The FDCPA contains several provisions that clearly outlaw overly aggressive debt collection techniques. In addition, the FDCPA allows consumers to seek monetary damages for suffering from physical and/or emotional distress.
In regards to voicemails, the FDCPA does not include a provision that specifically deals with telephone messages. Because there were not many voice messaging systems around in 1977, the United States Congress did not address the tactic of debt collection agencies leaving voicemails.
However, the FDCPA prohibits debt collectors from contacting third parties. It is very difficult for a bill collector such as Rash Curtis & Associates to leave a voicemail that is not heard by a third party. Therefore, many court decisions have gone in the favor of plaintiffs that received voicemails from debt collection agencies.
Additional FDCPA Voicemail Violations
The FDCPA forbids third party debt collectors from using abusive language in attempts to intimidate consumers into paying off delinquent credit card and personal loan balances. If Rash Curtis & Associates leaves you a voicemail containing foul language, you have plenty of evidence in the form of tapes to present to a licensed FDCPA attorney. Another overly aggressive tactic banned by the FDCPA involves the issuing of threats.
According to the FDCPA, a bill collector cannot threaten to seize your property or threaten to inform the IRS about your outstanding consumer debt. Once again, a recording of a voicemail that includes threats made by a debt collection agency is a powerful step forward in winning your FDCPA case.
How a FDCPA Lawyer Can Help
By working with an experienced consumer protection attorney who specializes in litigating FDCPA cases, you let Rash Curtis & Associates know you are serious about protecting the rights granted to you by the landmark consumer protection law.
Your FDCPA lawyer will thoroughly review your case, including any evidence you present that bolsters your legal arguments. If there is enough evidence against a third party debt collector, your attorney might decide to file a claim in civil court that seeks monetary damages for your pain and suffering.
*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 Rash Curtis & Associates or any other third-party collection agency, you may not be entitled to any compensation.