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Knowing one’s rights when dealing with debt collectors

On Behalf of | Sep 1, 2020 | Bankruptcy

Dealing with constant phone calls and collection letters may feel like an everyday task for individuals in Maryland and elsewhere who struggle under the weight of financial strain. Unfortunately, many of those who face similar trials might not always be aware of their options and legal rights when speaking with debt collectors. Knowing one’s rights and the types of tactics debt collectors are prohibited from using could help a person better understand how to handle the situation.

There are rules and regulations in place that govern the types of tactics collection agencies can use when attempting to collect on debts. For instance, collectors must identify the company they represent and they are prohibited from pretending to work for government agencies. Collection agencies are also prohibited from attempting to provide misleading or false information concerning amounts owed or from attempting to collect on debts that do not exist.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act also provides consumers with protection against creditor harassment. Collection agencies cannot threaten a person with legal consequences or use profane language in an attempt to obtain a payment. There are also rules that govern the times and circumstances under which collectors can attempt to contact a debtor, as well as rules that prevent collectors from releasing information to the public or speaking with unauthorized parties.

Dealing with a debt collection agency can be stressful enough as is, even without the presence of unlawful practices. Those who face significant financial struggles and wish to better understand their options and legal rights for dealing with debt collectors could benefit from seeking guidance from an attorney. An attorney can examine the circumstances a client in Maryland is facing and work toward protecting his or her legal rights while developing a plan to seek relief from the burdens of debt.