by Max Gunderson
This is a continuation of my previous blog, responding to a recent segment of the Mike Huckabee Show* that ran on August 17, 2010 focusing on persistent, obsessive and vicious phone calls from debt collectors. I recommend watching the full segment below.
(*Note: We at the My AZ Lawyers are not endorsing any political group by posting this video. We consider this a non-partisan video and are positing it for educational purposes only)
Though the following may be considered “off limits”, many debt collectors break these rules on a daily basis. Know your rights!
Debt collectors may not harass, oppress, or abuse you or any third parties they contact. For example, they may not:
Debt collectors may not use threats of violence or harm;
Debt collectors may not publish a list of names of people who refuse to pay their debts (but they can give this information to the credit reporting companies);
Debt collectors may not use obscene or profane language.
Debt collectors may not repeatedly use the phone to annoy someone.
Debt collectors may not lie when they are trying to collect a debt. For example, they may not:
Debt collectors may not falsely claim that they are attorneys or government representatives;
Debt collectors may not falsely claim that you have committed a crime;
Debt collectors may not falsely represent that they operate or work for a credit reporting company;
Debt collectors may not misrepresent the amount you owe;
Debt collectors may not indicate that papers they send you are legal forms if they aren’t; or
Debt collectors may not indicate that papers they send to you aren’t legal forms if they are.
Debt collectors also are prohibited from saying that:
Debt collectors may say not you will be arrested if you don’t pay your debt;
Debt collectors may say that they’ll seize, garnish, attach, or sell your property or wages unless they are permitted by law to take the action and intend to do so;
Debt collectors may say legal action will be taken against you, if doing so would be illegal or if they don’t intend to take the action.
Debt collectors may not give false credit information about you to anyone, including a credit reporting company.
Debt collectors may not send you anything that looks like an official document from a court or government agency if it isn’t.
Debt collectors may not use a false company name.
Debt collectors may not engage in unfair practices when they try to collect a debt.
Debt collectors may not try to collect any interest, fee, or other charge on top of the amount you owe unless the contract that created your debt – or your state law – allows the charge;
Debt collectors may not deposit a post-dated check early;
Debt collectors may not take or threaten to take your property unless it can be done legally; or
Debt collectors may not contact you by postcard.
If you are being harassed by a creditor or are unsure of what your rights are, you should contact a local Consumer Attorney who can advise you as to what you rights are and how to proceed when dealing with a harassing creditor. Contact The My AZ Lawyers about your consumer rights and about what protections are available to you from harassing debt collectors.
The My AZ Lawyers in Arizona (AZ), provides debt relief to communities throughout Arizona, including, but not limited to, Mesa, Scottsdale, Tempe, North Phoenix, Avondale, Peoria, Glendale, Chandler, Gilbert, Casa Grande, Prescott, Yuma, Tucson, Flagstaff, Anthem, Queen Creek, Maricopa County, Yavapai county, Coconino County, Pinal county, and Pima county. We are a debt relief agency. We help people file for bankruptcy.