Throughout the United States, state and federal laws protect consumers from mistreatment and unfair business practices—which can apply to debt collection efforts, telemarketing scams, deceptive advertising, etc. In Pennsylvania, many of these protections are outlined in the Unfair Trade Practices and Consumer Protection Law.
When focusing more specifically on the rights that you are afforded as a debtor, however, it is important to examine the protections of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act. These laws are enforced by federal agencies, as all U.S. citizens are afforded protection from creditor harassment, deceptive debt collection efforts and unfair credit reporting.
If you do not understand the scope of these laws, however, you will not know when your rights have been violated. For this reason, we encourage you to review the information below.
- Under this law, creditors are prohibited from engaging in certain behaviors while attempting to collect on unpaid debts. They must avoid using abuse or harassing language, calling a debtor before 8 A.M. or after 9 P.M., informing outside parties of the individual's debt, intentionally misinterpreting the amount of money that is owed and/or threatening to take unlawful action.
- Under this law, creditors are prohibited from contacting a consumer on their cell phone or home phone while using an automated dialing system or pre-recorded voice. If they do so without the consumer's "express consent," this behavior would be considered abusive. They must also provide the recipient with a name, phone number and address at which they can be reached.
- Under this law, the Credit Reporting Agency (CRA) must provide detailed information in one's credit report and inform the consumer of everyone who has requested a copy of their report. They must also investigate claims of inaccurate reporting when a consumer has submitted a formal complaint in writing—which is typically done within 30 days.
Have Your Consumer Rights Been Violated? Contact Our Firm Today!
If you believe that your rights have been violated by a creditor in Pennsylvania, The Law Office of Michael P. Forbes, PC encourages you to contact a Philadelphia debt collection defense attorney as soon as possible. In doing so, you can ensure that you will be protected from any further instances of abusive, deceptive or harassing debt collection practices.
My goal is to reach as many people as possible to let them know that they do have the option to combat collection agency bullies.
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Michael P Forbes
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Mr. Forbes has always been driven by the desire to help others. With that in mind he began his law career representing indigent families in the Philadelphia family law system for seven years.
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