Dallas Texas Unfair Debt Collection Lawyer Protects You
Your Dallas Texas unfair debt collection lawyer, Frenkel & Frenkel, protects your rights should you experience financial setbacks and face harassment from debt collectors
The federal government offers many protections against unfair collections, but your Dallas Texas unfair debt collection lawyer wants you to know there are also state laws designed to protect you from harassment, fraud, and abusive tactics commonly seen in debt collection throughout the country. When you find yourself in financial difficulty, it is wise to act quickly and call creditors to explain the circumstances. Creditors will sometimes work out an agreement that enables you to pay the debt under terms that work better for your new situation. If you cannot work out such an agreement, there are still protections available to you under the law. Protections Against Unfair Debt Collection A Dallas Texas unfair debt collection lawyer follows regulations found in the Texas Debt Collection Act, which prohibits fraudulent and abusive practices often used by debt collectors. Although a debt may increase due to attorney, investigation, service or collection fees, a debt collector may not attempt to collect more than the debtor agreed to pay. Debtors who dispute the validity of a debt must notify the creditor in writing, using certified mail with a return receipt. The debtor has 30 days after that notice to determine if the disputed item is correct. If it is incorrect, the creditor must notify any credit reporting agency as well as any company who received a copy of that report within the previous 30 days. If, at the end of 30 days, the creditor is unable to determine if the information is correct, they must make the change you request, notify the relevant parties, and cease all collection activity. Harassment and Fraud Prohibited In addition to providing verification of any debt being collected, a creditor may not use harassment or fraud in order to get a debtor to pay a debt. Creditors may not threaten violence, use profane or obscene language, and may not falsely accuse the consumer of fraud or another crime. Unless there have been proper court proceedings, a debt collector may not threaten arrest, repossession, or other property seizure. The debt collector may not call anonymously or make repeated phone calls, and may not make collect phone calls without disclosing the true name of the caller before the debtor accepts charges. A debt collector may not use a false name and may not misrepresent the amount the debtor owes. Dallas Texas unfair debt collection lawyers also say that a creditor may not send documents to a debtor that falsely appear to be from a court or other official agency, and may not misrepresent the nature of the services rendered by a collection agency. If a creditor falsely represents that the collector has information or something of value in order to get additional information from the consumer, they have committed fraud. Federal law also prohibits calls at work once they have been informed a debtor is not permitted to accept them, or any calls before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. Home and Wage Garnishments According to your Dallas Texas unfair debt collection attorney, if your home has been declared a homestead, it cannot be taken to pay a debt other than a mortgage or home equity line that used the home as collateral. In addition, Texas law only allows wage garnishment for court-ordered child support, back taxes, and defaulted student loans. Debt collectors cannot garnish wages for repayment of consumer debt, although collectors often threaten such tactics. There are civil and criminal penalties for violations of both federal and state collection regulations. In addition, unfair debt practices also violate the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices/Consumer Protection Act, allowing the Texas Attorney General to take action in the public interest, according to Dallas Texas unfair debt collection lawyers. If you believe debt collectors have unfairly targeted you, contact Frenkel & Frenkel today.