The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) became effective in 1978. The FDCPA is a federal law that applies to every state. In other words, everyone is protected by the FDCPA. Its purposes are to eliminate abusive practices in the collection of consumer debts, to promote fair debt collection, and to provide consumers with an avenue for disputing and obtaining validation of debt information in order to ensure the information’s accuracy. The FDCPA creates guidelines under which debt collectors may conduct business, defines rights of consumers involved with debt collectors, and prescribes penalties and remedies for violations of the FDCPA. The FDCPA is essentially a laundry list of what debt collectors can and cannot do while collecting a debt, as well as things debt collectors must do while collecting a debt. Contact Agruss Law firm, LLC, if a collection agency is harassing you.

What practices are off limits for debt collectors?

False statements: Debt collectors may not lie when they are trying to collect a debt. For example, debt collectors may not:

  1. Falsely claim that they are attorneys or government representatives,
  2. Falsely claim that you have committed a crime,
  3. Falsely represent that they work for a credit reporting company,
  4. Misrepresent the amount of money you owe,
  5. Indicate that papers they send you are legal forms if they are not, or
  6. Indicate that papers they send to you are not legal forms if they are.

Debt collectors also are prohibited from saying that:

  1. You will be arrested if you do not pay your debt,
  2. They will seize, garnish, attach, or sell your property or wages unless they are permitted by law to take the action and intend to do so, or
  3. Legal action will be taken against you, if doing so would be illegal or if they do not intend to take the action.

Debt collectors may not:

  1. Give false credit information about you to anyone, including a credit reporting company,
  2. Send you anything that looks like an official document from a court or government agency if it is not, or
  3. Use a false company name.

Unfair practices: Debt collectors may not engage in unfair practices when they try to collect a debt. For example, debt collectors may not:

  1. Try to collect any interest, fee, or other charge on top of the amount you owe unless the contract that created your debt–or your state law–allows the charge,
  2. Deposit a post-dated check early, or
  3. Take or threaten to take your property unless it can be done legally.

If a collection agency has harassed you, you may be entitled to money damages up to $1,000.00, based on the FDCPA, which has been around for almost 35 years. The FDCPA is a federal law that applies to every state. In other words, everyone is protected by the FDCPA. The FDCPA is essentially a laundry list of what debt collectors can and cannot do while collecting a debt, as well as things debt collectors must do while collecting a debt. Plus, the FDCPA has a fee-shift provision. This means, the collection agency pays your attorney’s fees and costs. Founding attorney, Michael Agruss, has settled over 1,500 debt collection harassment cases. We want to help you, too. Contact us today for a free consultation.

Complaints - The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act

  1. Scott

    Hello there. Does your firm handle FDCPA violations by collection centers? I am researching for a friend who has some thing in collection. He was trying to pay the bill, but they would not send him a verification of the debt owned after several requests I do believe by law, they are required to send him that out within 5 business days!

  2. Ira

    hi, i need to send a document to hannah. please make sure i have the correct address. if i put “attn: hannah” on envelope, she will get it!

  3. Ward

    ello, I was looking for information about a company that has appeared on my credit report in the last week. I am trying to purchase a home, our closing date is 8/29/2014. I had a ding that my mortgage lender was going to do a rapid refile on. When he did it, there was a new account posted from a company called Accelerated Financial Solutions showing that I owe $2,500. I had recently had a collection from them through a company called Dynamic Recovery solutions. I had filed a complaint against Dynamic Recovery Solutions through the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Dynamic Recovery Solutions said they would stop collecting on the account on 7/29/2014. On 07/30/2014 Accelerated Financial Solutions started creating entries on my three credit bureaus. I looked them up and it states that they are a “Distressed Debt Purchaser”. I have been a victim of identity theft and have been working on cleaning up my credit. I did find through all the call logs that there was another company attempting to collect on this same debt starting in January. They never sent a letter!

  4. James

    I recited a collection notice from you. I run my credit report every 3 month we do not owe any one any thing outstanding. I’ve had my identity stolen 3 times so this letter from Convergent doesn’t seem right. No I’m in air force overseas, the number above would go directly to my wife’s phone!

  5. Dena

    My husband has been receiving phone calls and has gotten a collection letter from Enhanced Recovery about 2 different AT&T bills that have passed statute of limitations on collections. I had Agruss help me with an issue I had with a collection agency. not for myself, but for my husband. It is a new case. one of the AT&T accounts should not have been charged . We were not in their service area and were told that we would not be charged for services. We were able to have one of them removed from his credit report, but there is one that they refuse on dispute!

  6. Roger

    I just picked up a phone message from ARA Associates wanting me to call them by tomorrow on Case#D11347081. I googled them and they appear to be a debt collection outfit. They show to be scam artists. I will call them tomorrow, but I cannot imagine what I would owe at this time. I have not received any notification in the past of any debt. The vmail said that they had made several attempts to contact me, which I do not believe is correct. They left the message yesterday afternoon and said that I have until noon on the 13th to reply to them. I have always had a clean credit report and I do not owe anyone a dime that I am aware of!

  7. Burl

    My wife and I have been endlessly harassed by Enhanced Recovery Company. we don’t even know any more what to do with these shits, they keep calling and calling, we receive debt collection letters from them about an amount owed to a phone company that we’ve never had any business with, whatsoever. all we know is just to ignore them but last week they threatened to show up at our front door. so we reported this to the police!

  8. Stacy

    Just wanted to add a testimonial. I’m on the page, but can’t see where to add one. Stacy Payne from Snyder, Texas. I just received a settlement check yesterday. I got an email from Mr. Agruss, who directed me to this site to add the blurb!

  9. Anthony

    I have a debt collector I don’t know calling me non stop and threatening me as well as calling multiple third parties including my parents, parent I laws, and my place of employment disclosing I have a debt and lying that I am going to jail and even went as far as telling one of the third parties I have a amber alet out for me!!! Please help. I know this is illegal and I want to sue them. I am in finace and they called my job telling them I have debts which looked terrible and caused problems. Also the embarrassment of calling multiple family members and lying to them. What do I do!

  10. Anthony

    I was cut off for a second time giving my contact info just now. I just want to make sure someone has my info. But maent is a typo too !! Lol. Jk with u. I’m being harassed by a collection company in manners I have never seen nor heard of before. They called multiple family members yesterday telling them rediculous stories, one was they issues an amber alert against me ( which is for kidnapped kids.. Isn’t it). Also called my job and said I am going to be sent to jail for a debt against me cause I committed fraud, left me messages saying I committed fraud and going to jail and they are doing a bunch of other things that are just crazy. I have never even heard of them or got anything in writing. I believe it’s for a old old payday loan from a couple years ago. They are not allowed to be calling any third parties correct? Isn’t that illegal ? Never mind my job which I am in finance and it caused me an issue at work by them saying I have a collection account and committed some kind of fraud that could cause serious issues for my licensing. That was my conversation. Please let me know if you need anything else or if that’s what you need and someone will call me in the morning ?? I need this to stop ASAP. They called again today and called family again today. Citing rediculous charges against me and saying the craziest things to theis parties. I can not have this continue and need help. Also I want to sue them. I looked at uour website and it seems what they are doing/did constitutes a reason to sue them. They called multiple family members yesterday telling them rediculous stories, one was they issues an amber alert against me ( which is for kidnapped kids.. Isn’t it). Also called my job and said I am going to be sent to jail for a debt against me cause I committed fraud, left me messages saying I committed fraud and going to jail and they are doing a bunch of other things that are just crazy. I have never even heard of them or got anything in writing. I believe it’s for a old old payday loan from a couple years ago. They are not allowed to be calling any third parties correct? Isn’t that illegal ? Never mind my job which I am in finance and it caused me an issue at work by them saying I have a collection account and committed some kind of fraud that could cause serious issues for my licensing!

  11. Steven

    Yes my parents got a call from 888 779 1949. That i owe money and they were looking for me and going to come to my house!

  12. Gary

    Is it possible to have a garnishment overturned concerning a student loan? My daughter’s husband’s wages are being garnisheed. My daughter was cooperating with GC Services and they led her to believe that she was working out details to set up a payment plan. They led her on for weeks, and then unexpectedly they began taking his wages, and now they tell her that nothing can be done. They are taking over $400 per month. They have a young child and a baby on the way and can’t afford so much per month!

  13. Sam

    I have or had an issue with sprint. I signed a contract for a cell based WiFi hotspot a few years back and in the contract its said that if I brought it back within 2 weeks they could take the unit back and. This is standard practice. Well its very late and I’m in NY I can’t take a call now but. I brought it back 6 days later because I wasn’t getting cell reception where I lived. …they wouldn’t take it back because I had misplaced the tiny cardboard box it came in. I called sprint, the third party company that sold it to me, etc etc trying to rectify the situation …because it had no use for me and. I brought it back way before the 2 weeks. Is it worth pursuing? Because they were trying to ruin my life for a completely bogus charge and they keep selling this so called debt to other agencies. I wouldn’t be surprised if thugs showed up at my house to break my legs!

  14. Gabriel

    I received a collection notice, as well as calls from Dynamic Recovery Solutions for a debt that was discharged in a bankruptcy. Yes the debt was accrued in 2006 in the original amount of 2600. After making about 4 payments I lost my job and could not pay. The debt was discharged in a 2012 bankruptcy. In August 2014 I received a collection letter requesting 14,923 in Paso Robles, CA!

  15. Brandi

    I just have questions on being harassed for debt? How do I know my rights. well I have a company calling me morning night day, on my phone my work phone, and I haven’t talked with them because well to be honest I don’t have the money to work out an agreement, but they are calling me before 8 am and at my work, which is not good for me!

  16. Visitor

    Procollect left a voice mail message or me today. Researching the internet it seems they are a collection agency. Two years ago this December I filed chapter 7 bankruptcy in eastern distict of texas. The only bills I owe are my house payment and utilities. Not sure what this is about but reading the internet I suspect they are trying to collect a debt discharged in bankruptcy. they left me a voice mail message to call them reguarding a debt and they are a debt collection agency. Don’t know anything else at this time. Just trying to find out about them on the internet. I was a funeral home assisting in making final arrangement for dear friend when they called. i’ll call procollect in the morning to find out what this about. if they are trying to collect a debt discharged in my chapter 7 I could use some extra cash. the judges down here do not play!

  17. Kindell

    Can cred-x call other family members abt your debt? This company has left a message on my son’s phone and my mothers home answering machine today. Also I was not responding to therer threating msgs on my work and cell phone. They would not state who they were representing. Do they have the right to harass other family members? I don’t know how they even got there phone number!

  18. Erick

    I would like to see if I case a against a debt collector. Yes the collection agency called me yesterday in reference to a credit card debt, and the representative identified themselves as being from the “LITIGATION DEPARTMENT” I said how does a collection agency have a litigation department? It sounds like you are insinuating that if I don’t make a deal with you that you are going to file a law suit against me? And when I pressed him that I think you might be violating my rights by insinuating that you are going to sue me. As litigation is what do when a lawsuit is filed He backed off and no I cannot sue you. The dictionary definition of LITIGATION IS Basically states is something that is done AFTER A LAWSUIT IS FILED. So how can a collection agency have a LITIGATION DEPARTMENT!

  19. Carlos A.

    I’VE RECEIVED HER E-MAIL MESSAGE YESTERDAY! I’M NOT SURE, BUT I DO HAVE THE REFERENCE #: IF YOU NEED IT! IT’S ABOUT THIS BACK PAY DAY LOAN THAT I OWE FROM ACE CASH EXPRESS (FROM NATIONAL CREDIT ADJUSTERS)!

  20. Laurie

    I’ve been receiving calls from Integrity Solution Services-I did some research and spoke with the person (they were looking for a different person with my name) but before I could get ahold of them, they called 2 of my friends-I have no idea how they would get their numbers except facebook. I had been getting missed calls from them then I got a random message. (I was traveling-helping my Dad so wasn’t picking up) when I got back in town-got another message and 2 of my friends contacted me saying that a girl called them and asked for my number\r\n[11/19/2014 4:34:19 PM CST] Visitor: neither of these friends are on any documents I have-except them are facebook friends\r\n[11/19/2014 4:34:30 PM CST] Natalie: I see. May I ask where you are located, city and state? and she didn’t tell them what it’s for. I really just saw that you dealt with them and wanted to let you know!

  21. Emi

    I’ve been burned by McKellar group and have debt collectors harassing me. I was contacted by them to collect on a Chase Manhattan debt and discussed a repayment plan. I actually thought I paid the account off with McKellar. I have letters and receipts. I’m really upset because I have other debt collectors contacting me threatening me to take me to court!

  22. Carlos A.

    YES, I WOULD LIKE TO SPEAK TO SAMANTHA OR MELISSA PLEASE! I DON’T HAVE A PHONE # AT THIS TIME, I CAN DO THIS ONLINE, IF POSSIBLE!

  23. Carlos A.

    I’M SORRY THAT I’VE LOST THE CONNECTION A FEW MINUTES AGO, MY NAME IS MR. CARLOS A. SHARP! I WANTED TO GET IN CONTACT WITH SAMANTHA OR MELISSA ABOUT SOME CASE WITH ACE CASE EXPRESS & I’VE LOST MY REFERENCE #! ABOUT THIS COMPANY CALLED NATIONAL CREDIT ADJUSTERS HAS BEEN CONTACTING ME OVER THE PHONE & I’VE TOLD THEM THAT I’M UNABLE TO PAY THE AMOUNT OWED TO THEM DUE TO ME BEING UNEMPLOYED & SAYING ABOUT GETTING A COURT ORDER FOR THAT SPECIFIC REASON! THANK YOU & HAVE A NICE DAY!

  24. Peter

    What are my options against Halsted Financial Harrasment? They leave voice mails stating a complaint has been filed against me, they do not state it is an attempt to collect a debt in the recording and call from multiple numbers that are not even listed on your site. The one time i did speak to them, they listed another collector as the company they purchased the debt from and claim it is an account that i do not have!

  25. Joe

    I have been getting collection calls on my cell phone even after they were told to remove the number that was never given out. They are still calling my cell. It is for a personal Target credit card. They have my home phone number but they do not call the home number they are only calling my cell. I have told them that they need to stop calling my cell as it is not legal to call me on it after I have stated not to and they wont tell me how they got my cell number. I never giving that out to any of my accounts. They never said what company they are from other then they are tring to collect a debt for Target!

  26. Mike

    Hi, I have a very small issue, and I have talked to other people and they said that I should try some one else and I think it is because of the size of my case. Only a few hundred dollars. Do you do a review to see if it is something you will do? I am irritated more of the principle of it. I have the money, but I find the practice of this collection agency deceptive. I have filed a complaint with the CFPB, I will paste those here for you to read. I received a communication from a debt collection agency for an apartment complex that I vacated on 02/16/15. The letter was dated 02/24/15 and was received 03/03/15 at my forwarding address which was provided to the apartment complex 30 days prior to moving. The letter accuses me of not responded to a letter sent and dated 02/17/15 which requested payment of $646.79. Additionally, the letter references an enclosure of itemization in the original letter, which is not included in the follow-up letter. I called the complex today as it did not make sense to me that I could be sent to collections already. I was expecting a final bill for utilities (billed via the complex), but not to be sent to collections the day after vacating. I also asked the property manager to send me a copy of the Statement of Deposit Account to show itemized charges. I was sent a copy of the original, which I noticed was dated 02/19/15 and only for a balance of $511.79. The complex informed me that they actually mailed the statement Certified Mail on 02/19/15, not 02/17/15 as indicated in writing. Additionally, Cerified Mail should provide documentation of this, which they also told me they did not have. I have not received this letter. I offered to pay the correct amount today to the apartment complex, and was told that could not be accepted unless I worked it out with the agency (keeping in mind I expected a bill, I have no issue with paying it.) Attempts to work this out with the agency were not successfully. I provided the agency the statement reflecting the lower balance and have not received a return call. I am filing this complaint due to what I am perception of a deceptive practice (misrepresentation of the facts of communication) and, mainly, misrepresentation of the amount owed. They are still trying to collect the higher balance and I have confirmed with the apartment that it is incorrect, and I have it in writing!

  27. Tonya

    I have a bill collector calling who is treating to take me to court for a light bill from 2010 and I don’t even thin I was living there. Also the company kept my deposit. They have called my Mom’s number and left voicemail measage also my number. They told me they are going to send it to litigation. The number they call from is 813-513-7267.

  28. Douglas

    I am being harrassed by Halstead Financial Services. Getting Robo Dial Calls. Lat week I had a voice mail on my phone from an unrecognized number to my cell phone. It was pre-recorded message and stated that I needed to call them as they represented a client who I owed money too. The number they call from is fake and the number they provide is a toll free number. There is no option to opt out of these calls. Company recording says that they are from Halstead Financial Services!

  29. Visitor

    Getting telemarketing calls. Calling me auto insurance quotes. That I don’t need. This company calls once every day!

  30. Thomas

    HALSTED FINANICIAL HAS SENT ME A COLLECTION LETTER AND HAS SAID THAY WERE GOING TO SUE ME I JUST DONT HAVE THE MONEY FOR MY WIFES OR MY CHECK LOAN I ASKE THEM TO STOP CALLING ME AND NOT TO CONTACT ME AND THAY STILL DO. THAY TOLD ME THAY WERE GOING TO SUE ME OVER THE PHONE AND I GOT A LETTER TODAY I DO NOT EVER PAY A COLLECTION ANGENCY BECOUSE MOST OF THEM ARE NOT REAL!

  31. Robin

    I received a call at work from 618-207-3301 saying I am named as a defendant in a lawsuit with a docket number and they would give me 24 hours to “pay restitution. She said she is from Bloom and Associates, which I am not sure if this is the correct spelling? Thanks.

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