Allied Interstate Inc., has agreed to pay a record-breaking $1.75 million to settle a lawsuit with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). In a recent press release, a FTC spokesperson focused on Allied’s alleged attempts to illegally collect debts from consumers that did not owe them money. “Debt collectors had better make sure their information is accurate, or they could end up paying a big penalty,” said David Vladeck, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection.
The FTC lawsuit accuses Allied Interstate of several Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) violations, including:
?continuing to contact consumers even after being informed by them that they did not owe the debt to Allied
? placing numerous illegal collection calls to 3rd parties
?placing multiple collection calls over a short period of time
?using abusive and/or profane language during collection calls to consumers
?revealing the details of a consumer’s debt to 3rd parties
?falsely threatening to sue consumers without any intention of actually doing so.
The federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) was designed to combat abusive and deceptive practices committed by 3rd party debt collectors against consumers. It grants consumers the right to sue debt collectors for a violation of the FDCPA.
The amount of damages that a consumer may potentially recover under the FDCPA will depend upon the seriousness of the violation and the number of violations. Debt collectors routinely settle FDCPA claims involving technical violations of the Act for $1,000 plus attorney fees. As a general rule, the worse the conduct of a debt collector the higher the potential damages under the FDCPA.
Under the FDCPA a consumer may sue the debt collector for statutory damages, attorney fees and actual damages.
If you are being harassed by debt collectors in violation of the FDCPA, you may be entitled to compensation. Please call California Consumer Protection Attorney, Todd M. Friedman at 877-449-8898 for a free consultation.