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Can Debt Collectors Call My Employer?
Debt collectors can be very aggressive in their efforts to collect payment, especially third-party collection companies and collection lawyers. Generally, debt collectors are only permitted to discuss your debt with you, your spouse, or your attorney. If they attempt to speak with others regarding your debt, including your employer, they may be violating federal law. To put a stop to abusive and harassing practices by debt collectors, you should contact an Ohio debt lawyer who can help you navigate the complex federal and state laws governing debt collections and determine how you can enforce your rights.
Limits to Collection Calls
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act(FDCPA) is a federal statute aimed at curbing the use of abusive, deceptive, and unfair debt collection practices by many debt collectors. Under the FDCPA, a debt collector is prohibited from communicating with any person in connection with a debt other than the following:
- The debtor, spouse, parent (if the debtor is a minor), guardian, executor, or administrator;
- The debtor’s attorney;
- A consumer reporting agency that is permitted by law to receive such communications;
- The creditor; and
- The creditor’s attorney.
Therefore, debt collectors cannot contact your employer to discuss your debt unless they obtain a court order that allows such communication to occur.
Calls for Acquiring Location Information
Debt collectors may contact others, including employers, for the limited purpose of acquiring information regarding the location of the debtor. In these calls, debt collectors must identify themselves and state that the call is only for the purpose of confirming or correcting location information regarding the debtor. During these calls, the collector cannot state that the debtor owes a debt or use any language or symbol that indicates the collector is in the debt collection business. Furthermore, the collector cannot state that the communication relates to the collection of a debt.
It is important to note that the debt collector cannot communicate with these individuals more than once unless specifically requested by the individual or the collector reasonably believes that the earlier response was incorrect or incomplete.
If you’re not allowed to receive personal calls at work, then you should notify the debt collector right away. Collectors are not permitted to continue to contact you at work if they are aware that your employer does not allow you to receive such calls.
Contact an Ohio Debt Attorney if a Debt Collector Violates your Rights
The FDCPA offers debtors with protections against overly aggressive debt collection practices by collectors. You may be able to file suit for damages against the debt collector in state court, initiate a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), or file a complaint with other state consumer protection agencies. You may also be able to use the FDCPA violations to your advantage in your debt settlement efforts.
To determine the best course of action, you should contact the experienced consumer law attorneys at Luftman, Heck & Associates for help. Our advocates can help you determine how to deal with illegal debt collection practices. Contact us at (888) 726-3181 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free, initial consultation with one of our experienced Ohio debt lawyers.