Debt collection can be a stressful experience. It is less stressful when you know your rights as a consumer when dealing with debt collectors. In particular, debt collectors are not allowed to call third parties, family members, neighbors, co-workers, or your employer to collect a debt. They can call these third parties for other reasons but those reasons are strictly limited by law. Here is what you need to know about debt collection calls to third parties, family, co-worker’s neighbors, and employers.
Debt collection agencies can contact your family, friends, employer, and other third parties one time to obtain your contact information. They cannot disclose the existence of the debt or discuss the debt.
Debt Collection Calls to Third Parties
Under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), debt collectors are not allowed to disclose details about a debt to anyone other than the consumer who owes the debt, their spouse, or their attorney. This means that debt collectors cannot call your friends, family members, neighbors, co-workers, employer, or anyone else to discuss your debt.
However, debt collectors are allowed to contact third parties for the purpose of obtaining your contact information, such as your phone number or address. They are also allowed to contact your employer to verify your employment. They may also contact you at work.
These calls are strictly limited however. If a debt collector contacts a third party, they must identify themselves and state that they are only seeking to obtain your contact information. They are not allowed to disclose that they are attempting to collect on a debt. They also have to stop calling at work once they know your employer doesn’t allow personal calls.
If you are wondering how many times can a debt collector contact a third party, the answer is once. This is worth repeating. Debt collectors may only contact third parties one time. Additional calls to the same family member, friend, co-worker, employer, or other third party are strictly prohibited.
Debt Collection Calls to Employers
Collection agencies may call your employer for very limited purposes. They are allowed to contact your employer to verify your employment or to contact you at work if they do not have your personal contact information. Even so, debt collectors are not allowed to disclose details about a debt to your employer.
If a debt collector contacts your employer, they must identify themselves and state that they are only seeking to verify your employment or obtain your contact information. They are not allowed to disclose that they are attempting to collect on a debt. Again, this is a one-time call. More than one call to verify your employment violates the FDCPA.
What to Do If a Debt Collector Contacts Third Parties or Your Employer
If you face any debt collection calls to third parties or your employer in an attempt to collect on a debt, contact us immediately. They have likely violated your privacy and other legal rights. We can stop the debt collection calls to third parties. We can also make the debt collector pay you.
To stop the calls you can also send a written letter to the debt collector requesting that they stop contacting others about the debt. Collection agencies are required to comply with your request to cease and desist calling. You also have the right to dispute the debt and request that the debt collector stop contacting you about the debt. Debt collectors simply have no choice but to comply with your request to stop debt collection calls to third parties.
If you are represented by an attorney, provide the collection agency with his name and contact information to stop the calls. If you don’t have an attorney, contact us. We will stop the collection calls on day one.
If a debt collector continues to contact third parties or your employer after you have requested that they stop, they may be in violation of the FDCPA. If that occurs in your case call us immediately.
Can I Send a Cease and Desist Letter?
If you want to send a cease and desist letter to a debt collector, there are several things to keep in mind:
- Be clear and concise: The letter should clearly state you are requesting the debt collector to cease all communication with you, your employer, and your family members.
- Keep a copy of the letter: Make sure to keep a copy of the letter and any other correspondence you send or receive from the debt collector.
- Send the letter via certified mail: This will provide proof that the debt collector received the letter.
- Don’t agree to pay the debt: Do not acknowledge the debt or agree to pay it. Doing so can restart the statute of limitations and will be used against you later.
- Know your rights: Be aware of your rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and other consumer protection laws. Debt collectors are required to follow certain rules when attempting to collect a debt, and it’s important to know what they can and cannot do.
- Consider consulting with an attorney: If you are unsure about how to proceed or if you have concerns about your rights, consider consulting with an attorney who specializes in debt collection law.
Remember that sending a cease and desist letter does not make the debt go away. If you owe the debt, you may still be responsible for paying it. You may need to work out a payment plan or negotiate a settlement with the creditor to resolve the debt. This is another reason to engage competent legal counsel before making any decisions. Sending a cease and desist letter to stop debt collection calls to third parties or your employer can be tricky. Legal options may be a better way to go.
Debt collectors are not allowed to place debt collection calls to third parties or your employer to collect on a debt. They can call to obtain your contact information or verify your employment. If a debt collector contacts a third party, family member, or your employer, they must identify themselves and state that they are only seeking to obtain your contact information or verify your employment. They cannot disclose the existence of the debt.
If you believe that a debt collector is violating your rights you have options. You can dispute the debt or request they stop contacting you or anyone else about the debt. You also have the right to monetary damages against the offending collection agency. Contact us today if you have any questions about stopping debt collection calls to third parties or your employer.