I, Attorney Michael P. Forbes, recently contributed to a CBS Philly article detailing new powers that have been granted to student loan debt collectors. Thanks to a provision hidden within the fine print of newly passed legislation, collection agencies are now permitted to autodial debtors and leave recorded messages on their cell phones. This act was previously deemed illegal. Now that this restriction has been rescinded, nearly 40 million student loan borrowers in the United States are now subject to automated, continuous collection efforts.
I am strongly against this new law, as it gives debt collectors new ways to continuously badger people and pressure them into paying bills they may not be able to afford. This contradicts the Student Aid Bill of Rights, giving inappropriate power to abusive collectors and ignoring consumer protections mandates. This is likely the start of several efforts by debt collectors to reduce the reach of the 1991 Telephone Consumer Protection Act passed by President George H.W. Bush.
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