Debt collection agencies are motivated by money to collect the balances owed on delinquent consumer credit card and personal loan accounts. Sometimes, the motivation of money can make third party debt collectors cross the legal line.
Established in 1977 to put a check on aggressive bill collector tactics, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) makes it illegal for debt collection agencies to engage in dozens of previously acceptable debt collection practices.
The monumental federal consumer protection law has paved the legal way for states to enact their own versions of the FDCPA. Just like the federal FDCPA, most state FDCPA laws back up the outlawed provisions of the federal consumer protection law.
State laws also grant consumers the right to file claims against third party debt collectors that seek monetary damages.
South Dakota FDCPA Laws
The United States Congress enacted the FDCPA to cover every American consumer. The consumer protection law carries as much legal weight in Bangor, Maine, as it does in San Diego, California.
However, several states have gone further in establishing consumer protections against the aggressive tactics implemented by bill collectors. South Dakota FDCPA laws mostly follow the federal FDCPA word for word.
Like every other state, South Dakota has taken advantage of a federal statute that allows states to set a statute of limitations for the collection of outstanding consumer debts. In South Dakota, third party debt collectors have six years to pursue delinquent debts created by written contracts and open credit accounts.
Consumer Protections under the FDCPA and South Dakota Collection Laws
Have you sent a formal notice to a bill collector requesting the company stop calling you, but the company ignored your request? Under the FDCPA, you have the right to consult with a licensed consumer protection lawyer to determine the best course of legal action.
The FDCPA bans the unethical practice of debt collection agencies placing consumer names on bad debt lists. Third party debt collectors cannot take money out of consumer bank accounts, without first gaining the approval of a court that issues a wage garnishment order.
One of the most common violations of the FDCPA involves phone calls made at odd times during the day. According to the FDCPA, bill collectors are prohibited form calling consumers at home and on their cell phones between 9 pm and 8 am.
How do you prove a debt collection agency contacted you in the middle of the night? This is where South Dakota FDCPA laws come into play. Under South Dakota FDCPA laws, only one person involved in a phone call needs to grant permission to tape record the phone call.
All you have to do is tape a phone conversation held with a third party debt collector after 9 pm to create a physical time stamp you can use in a civil lawsuit.
Because of the negligence of a bill collector, you might be eligible to receive monetary damages for suffering from physical and/or emotional duress. Discover the rights granted under the FDCPA by speaking with a licensed consumer protection attorney.
If you believe that a debt collector is violating South Dakota’s FDCPA laws, you should seek the help of an FDCPA attorney. You may be able to seek up to $1,000 in damages for each violation of the FDCPA. An attorney will be able to help navigate you through the entire process.