Having represented Bankruptcy clients for a number of years, I am certain that most people want to pay the debt they owe.
I strongly urge my clients to pay their debt if there is some reasonable way to do so. I also urge them not to use credit cards.
However, the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act has little to do with whether a debt is owed. It has everything to do with creating a civil environment in which debts are collected.
The FDCPA levels the playing field between the collector and debtor but it also levels the playing field amongst the collectors as follows:
1. It provides the Collector with a specific written list of dos and don'ts. i.e. easy to follow rules.
2. It allows for parental and spousal communication.
3. It provides for long collection hours. 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.
4. It contains a "bona fide" error defense.
5. It provides an FTC opinion letter defense.
6. Statutory damages are very low and class action damages are limited.
7. It cleans the marketplace of anti competitive overreaching. This allows the honest collector an opportunity to compete with the "more aggressive" collectors.
Despite the clear rules and defenses, some debt collectors still believe that using a "stick" is still the best way to collect.
Contact me if you are being hit by the "stick" as a result of inappropriate debt collector contact and we can discuss your legal options.