Many Florida residents would agree that it is easy to get into financial distress. An illness, accident or job loss can quickly make it difficult to pay the bills each month, and in many cases, it is credit card debt that is neglected first, since it is not considered as important as paying the rent and feeding the family. Eventually, however, those creditors are going to start calling wanting their money.
Debt collection companies have been in the news in recent years for violating the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, which limits what they are allowed to do in order to collect debts. Many Florida consumers are not aware that they have rights when it comes to debt collection. For example, they are not obligated to take a debt collector’s calls, and in fact, they can even have them stopped. However, it might be beneficial to take at least one call in order to get the details regarding the debt the caller claims is owed.
A consumer can send a letter to the company in question requesting that any contact be stopped. It should be sent via certified mail with a return receipt. The receipt will be the proof that the letter was received, and it is often worth the cost. The creditor might call one additional time to verify that calls will cease and/or to inform the consumer that litigation will be commenced. Any other calls would be a violation of the FDCPA.
If the caller refuses to stop contact when given notice under the FDCPA, it might be time to involve an attorney. However, the larger issue of righting a financial problem should be addressed regardless of whether a creditor is still calling. Filing bankruptcy could provide a way to find relief from credit card debt and other financial obligations that have become a burden to pay.
Source: consumeraffairs.com, “Debt collector calling? Here’s what to do“, Mark Huffman, July 12, 2016