Know Your Debt Harassment Rights
The Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act (FCCPA) prohibits debt collectors from using certain types of abusive, deceptive and misleading debt collection tactics. The FCCPA supplements the protections provided by the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and may provide greater protection to Florida residents – as well as ways for you to collect money from your harassers!
Section 559.72 of the FCCPA prohibits debt collectors from:
- Falsely representing themselves as a law enforcement officer or a representative of any governmental agency.
- Using or threatening force or violence.
- Communicating, or threatening to communicate, with your employer about the debt – unless they have taken a judgment against you.
- Harassing your family about the debt.
- Using obscene, profane, vulgar or willfully abusive language when communicating with you or your family.
- Claiming, attempting or threatening to enforce an illegitimate debt against you which doesn’t exist (for example, an expired debt under the statute of limitations).
- Using communications that give the appearance of being authorized by the government (for example, forms and “summons” designed to look like government documents or letters from attorneys).
- Pretending to be attorneys or inferring that attorneys have deemed that you owe the debt.
- Contacting you between the hours of 9 p.m. And 8 a.m. Without your permission.
- Filing a lawsuit against you in the wrong venue.
- Knowingly hiring an unlicensed credit collection agency to collect a debt.
- Mailing you documents that contain embarrassing words or phrases on a postcard or envelope (e.g.: dear deadbeat).
- Communicating directly with you when they know you are represented by an attorney.
- Advertising, or threatening to advertise, your debt for sale.
- Publishing, posting – or threatening to publish or post – your name on a deadbeat consumer list.
- Causing charges to made to debtors through the use of collect calls which may conceal the real reason for the communication.
If a debt collector or creditor violates the FCCPA, you may have a private cause of action. That means you may be entitled to damages under the law of up to $1,000. You may also be entitled to damages for emotional distress, and punitive damages (at the discretion of a judge, but possible if the debt collector’s tactics were egregious).
How Our Legal Team Can Help
Are you a victim of unfair debt collection practices? It’s important to know that you can, and should, fight back. The aggressive, results-driven attorneys at Florida Debt Fighters know the unethical practices and tactics that the nation’s worst debt collection companies use to harass innocent consumers. We are litigators who fight debt collectors for consumers just like you. Our goal is make bill collectors stop their harassing calls – once and for all.