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Stopping Creditor Harassment
Creditor harassment is a serious problem that millions of Americans face on a daily basis. Receiving collection calls is one thing, but when debt collectors make embarrassing calls at all hours of the day, your life can easily turn into a nightmare. Most of the time, these calls come from collection agencies whose sole purpose is to collect what you owe, regardless of your personal circumstances. If you can't work out a payment plan with your creditors and they turn your information over to a collection agency, here are some helpful facts about creditor harassment and your rights.
If you have been harassed by debt collectors, you have rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act ("FDCPA")
FDCPA was enacted in 1978 to prohibit debt collectors from harassment and abuse in collecting consumer debt.
Before you give in to the harassing calls, it is important to understand your personal rights. Under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), all debt collectors must cease contacting you if they receive your request in writing. Not only can you request that the debt collectors stop calling you, the FDCPA prevents them from engaging in any of the following actions.
- Contacting you at work
- Calling neighbors, friends, and employers about your debt
- Contacting you at unreasonable hours
- Refusing to disclose the collector's identity
- Making threatening or insulting comments
- Calling you repeatedly
These are not the only illegal activities that creditors sometimes engage in, but they are some of the most common. To make your letter more effective, make a list or log of all the debt collection agency's illegal behavior or have a lawyer draft a letter and send it.
You can sue a debt collector for harassment and abuse under FDCPA and win a settlement for violation of Federal law.
Automatic Stay and Bankruptcy in San Fernando Valley
Immediately after filing Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, you will be protected from creditor harassment under automatic stay laws. Automatic stay prevents creditors from continuing their collection activities. This will provide you with a break from the constant, humiliating calls once and for all. Automatic stay also prohibits your creditors from taking any type of legal action against you, which can be immensely helpful when you are experiencing financial difficulties. Automatic stay can immediately protect you from the following issues:
- Foreclosure Action
- Specific Liens
- IRS Tax Liability
- Wage Garnishment
- Outstanding Child or Spousal Support
The automatic stay will go into effect immediately upon your filing of the case in Court. If a creditor still wants to collect from you, they will need permission from a judge, who will, more than likely, not give them permission to attempt to collect an unsecured debt. Bankruptcy is a serious matter, and you should review your finances with a qualified attorney before you decide to file.
Stop the Harassment – Contact our office and we will provide you with a sample letter to send to your creditor(s) to stop the harassment.
If you are being harassed by creditors or considering bankruptcy, please contact a San Fernando Valley bankruptcy attorney at Nader & Berneman today. We take pride in providing professional and compassionate legal services to all of our clients. Schedule a free consultation with our firm by calling (818) 788-5008.
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