Unfortunately, many people who are facing debt problems have to deal with the accompanying stresses of creditor harassment. Creditors often use collections agencies to go after debtors and collect payment. These agencies tend to use whatever methods necessary, however drastic, to get money from debtors. In the past, collectors have resorted to threats, harassment, and other tactics. Harassment is illegal, however, thanks to the FDCPA and the FCCPA (Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act), which are both national and state-wide acts that prohibit certain actions. If you have been dealing with violators of the FDCPA or the FCCPA, contact creditor harassment lawyers in St. Petersburg right away.
What to Do When You Are Being Harassed by Debt Collectors
If you are facing issues with debt collectors, call your creditor harassment lawyers in St. Petersburg, and take the following steps to protect your rights:
- Record information about the calls you receive. Take note of the time and date of every call as well as the name of the person you speak to. You should also make notes regarding what you talked about, and any threatening, humiliating, or harassing things they say. If you can, you may also want to take a screenshot or picture of the caller ID that shows the date and time you receive the calls. This is especially important if they are calling repeatedly, or before 8:00 am or after 9:00 pm.
- Save messages and voicemails. While you cannot record anyone without their consent, you should keep any phone messages or voicemails that collection agencies leave.
- Hold onto notices and letters. Keep copies of all mail correspondence you receive from collection agencies, including the envelopes. Some envelopes are misleading to consumers, and this evidence can be useful for your team of creditor harassment lawyers in St. Petersburg if your case escalates.
Familiarize Yourself with the FCCPA and the FDCPA
It is wise to familiarize yourself with the Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act (FCCPA), which prohibits certain behaviors to protect the rights of consumers. The FCCPA supplements the FDCPA (Fair Debt Collection Practices Act), which is a country-wide act that prevents abuse in the debt collection industry. The following are violations of the FCCPA:
- Using or threatening to use force
- Impersonating a law enforcement officer or government agency representative
- Harming a debtor’s reputation
- Using profane, obscene, or harassing language
- Speaking to the debtor’s employer without permission without a final judgment
- Talking to the debtor’s family with a frequency considered harassing
- Calling the debtor after 9 pm or before 8 am
Call Your St. Petersburg Creditor Harassment Lawyers at Berkowitz & Myer
The FCCPA also prohibits communication with debtors if the debtor has an attorney’s representation in relation to the debt in question. To speak with creditor harassment lawyers in St. Petersburg, call Berkowitz & Myer. Our team will ensure that you know your rights.