Do the Repeated Phone Calls You Are Receiving Amount to Harassment?
Falling behind on your financial obligations is extremely stressful. Whether your inability to pay is a result of losing your job, a divorce, sustaining some type of illness or injury or another life situation, financial problems just add to anxiety and worry. A short time after you have failed to pay a bill, you will begin to receive letters and phone calls from creditors demanding payment. The question is, do the repeated phone calls you are receiving amount to harassment?
What about “cold calls” from telemarketers or other individuals seeking new customers? Are these types of calls legal? How many calls do telemarketers or debt collectors have to make before the calls reach the level of harassment?
How the Telephone Consumer Protection Act Protects Consumers from Harassment
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) was enacted in 1991 to protect consumers from unscrupulous telemarketers, abuse from debt collectors and creditor harassment.
Telemarketers who violate the law by making repeated marketing calls or debt collectors who engage in harassing conduct should be held accountable for their actions. The TCPA allows legal action to be taken against these individuals and organizations if they engage in any of the following activities:
- Making use of automated dialing equipment and technology, or prerecorded messages, to call a residential number without the called party’s prior written consent;
- Using such technology to call an emergency phone line, hospital patient, cell phone or any other phone service where the caller is charged for incoming calls;
- Operating an automatic telephone dialing system for the purpose of calling multiple business phone lines at the same time;
- Sending unauthorized transmissions or unsolicited advertisements to a fax machine;
- Engaging in telemarketing using live callers;
- Making more than one phone call in a 12-month period on behalf of the same organization;
- Making harassing phone calls in violation of the Fair Debt Collection
Practices Act (FDCPA) or Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act (FCCPA).
If you have been victimized by phone harassment or repeated marketing calls, you also have the right to file a lawsuit seeking compensation for the harassment. Willful and knowing violators of the TCPA can be required to pay their victims $500 in damages for each violation. Consumers can have their phone numbers added to the national Do-Not-Call list as well.
Legal Representation for Telemarketer or Creditor Harassment
If you believe you are a victim of harassment due to the number and type of phone calls you have been receiving from telemarketers or creditors, you owe it to yourself to retain legal counsel to help you to pursue damages. An attorney from Disparti Law Group can review your case and advise you about whether you are eligible to pursue damages. As a consumer, you have the right to live your life free from harassment. Let the Florida Debt Fighters help you put an end to creditor and telemarketer harassment. Call us now to get help in holding creditors accountable for their actions.