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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Protection From Debt Collectors: Part One

Part 1 focuses on identifying the primary Federal Law itself and who it applies to.  Future parts will focus on what debt collectors are allowed to do under the law, what the law prohibits them from doing, and what actions a consumer/debtor can take (possibly including recovering monetary damages) when debt collectors violate the law.

A.  The Primary Federal Law which Protects  Against Debt Collectors


1.  The primary Federal Law which provides protection against certain  actions by debt collectors and debt collection agencies is called the Fair  Debt Collection Practices Act, or "FDCPA".


B.  To Whom and What does the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) Apply?


1. What kind of debts does the FDCPA apply to?


a) The FDCPA applies to personal debts, not business debts.

2.  What kind of persons or organizations are considered debt collectors under the FDCPA, and thus must follow it? The FDCPA defines "debt collector" as:


(a) a person who regularly collects, or attempts to collect, personal  debts on behalf of another person or institution; and

(b) a person who regularly collects, or attempts to collect,  personal debts on his/her/its own behalf, but uses a different name in doing so.

3.  What kind of persons or organizations are not considered debt collectors under the FDCPA, and thus may not need to follow it?  (this list is not exhaustive, but contains the most common examples)


(a) an entity collecting another entity's debt in a rare occurrence;

(b) an entity which collects its own debts using its own name;

(c) an entity which owned the debt and sold it, but continues to service it (examples include student loan companies and mortgage loan companies); and/or

d) an entity which is attempting to collect a debt in good standing (in   other words, a debit not in default).

MR. MCGRATH PROVIDES A DEFENSE AGAINST DEBT COLLECTORS BASED ON APPLICABLE FEDERAL AND/OR STATE LAW.  CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE.