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Debt collection practices still far too abusive

While the following story is a month old, the message of it is what is most important.

New York residents who have dealt with debt collectors know the drill. They call all the time, often at inconvenient hours; they use aggressive tactics or make assertions that likely are not true; and, ultimately, it leaves you feeling like there may be no end in sight to the abuse you are dealing with on a weekly, if not daily, basis.

Well, an Ohio Senator is fed up with the way these collection agencies go about their business. He wrote a letter in early June -- his third in the past 12 months -- to the director of the Consumer financial Protection Bureau, expressing his dissatisfaction with the way debt collectors treat their in-debt individuals.

It does not matter what state the Senator is from; his sentiments are uniform throughout the country, and there are numerous Nyack residents who support the Senator's message. Abusive debt collectors are commonly associated with credit card debt; but medical debt, car loans and mortgages can result in an individual being abused too.

Remember, there is a federal law (the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act) that establishes rules for what debt collectors can and can't do. Collectors can't artificially inflate your debt; they can't embarrass you through media formats to make you pay; they are barred from calling at certain times, and if the in-debt individual requests (in writing) for the calls stop, they must abide by the request; and they cannot misrepresent themselves as law enforcement or as an attorney.

There are numerous other ways in which a debt collector can violate the FDCPA; and if you believe you are a victim of unfair debt collection practices, you can take legal action against the abusive collector.

Source: Columbus Dispatch, "Debt-collection reform urged," Jill Riepenhoff, June 5, 2013

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