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Stopping harassment by debt collectors

Debtors in Louisiana who suffer from harassment by debt collectors have legal recourse. While these companies are within their legal rights to contact consumers about delinquent accounts, any harassment that they conduct is illegal. Those that engage in harassment can be reported to the Federal Trade Commission and can be subject to punitive action.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is legislation that protects consumers from harassment from debt collectors. According the FDCPA, debt collectors that are used by third party agencies are prohibited from any behavior that can be deemed as harassing. While the provisions of the FDCPA do not pertain to collectors that are employed by the original creditors, some states have their own laws that address this loophole.

Under the FDCPA, debt collectors are required to identify themselves every time they communicate with consumers, give them proof of the debt and advise them that they are communicating with debt collectors and that information gathered during the communication can be used to collect on the debt. Debt collectors are required to provide the name and address of the original creditor and advise the consumers that they have the right to contest the debt. Debt collectors are also only allowed to file lawsuits against consumers if there are grounds for doing so and it is filed in the appropriate venue.

Debt collectors are not allowed to call consumers at unreasonable hours and must immediately stop contacting consumers who submit a written notice. The FDCPA also prohibits debt collectors from making repeated and continuous calls to consumers. A bankruptcy attorney can consider the financial status of a client and advise what form of debt relief might be most appropriate.

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