If you’re being harassed about a debt in violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), there are certain steps you should take to set yourself up for victory.
Keep records of everything.
Create a log and keep it handy. Every single time they call, document the date, time of day, name of the person placing the call, the agency they work for, the number on your Caller ID, and details about the conversation or message. Always, always answer the phone as your call log can be used as evidence that the debt collector called you on a specific date and time. Here’s a call log you can use.
Demand that they stop calling you.
Debt collectors violate the FDCPA when they fail to listen to your instructions to “stop calling.” Once you say “stop calling,” any subsequent calls are a violation of the FDCPA.
Put it in writing.
Send a “cease and desist” letter via certified mail requesting that the collector stop contacting you. Keep a copy of the letter for yourself and send it “return receipt requested.” Here’s a sample letter you can use.
Once they receive that letter, the collector is legally required to stop all collection efforts. Be prepared, though – the creditor may reassign the collection to a different agency to get around that requirement.
Request the details of the debt.
Send a written request that the debt collector provide written proof that the debt is yours, and demand an explanation as to how they arrived at the amount you owe.
Log any calls they make to your friends, family, or co-workers.
If you hear that the collector is contacting any third parties, try to get the same information from them that you would put in your own call log.
I’ve done all of that, and they just won’t stop. Now what?
While the thought of filing a lawsuit against a big company may feel intimidating, this is something experienced debt collection abuse attorneys do every day. With the records you have gathered by following the steps above, you’ve created a strong case.
It’s free to chat with me about your options – you can call or text me at 215.551.7109, or drop me a line.