Fighting Back Against Creditor Threats Nationwide
You Don’t Have to Put Up With Threats
Owing money doesn’t mean you have to accept threatening calls from debt collection agencies. Debt collectors who make threats against you are breaking the law. At the Law Offices of Todd M. Friedman in Woodland Hills, California, we can do more than just stop the threats. In many cases, we can obtain compensation for you.
If you have received threats from a debt collector, call our consumer protection lawyers at 323-925-2659 for a free initial consultation. We serve consumers in California, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Illinois, and nationwide. Let us help you stop these threatening calls for good and fight for compensation for the harassment you’ve suffered.
What Counts as a Creditor Threat?
Federal laws are extremely clear about what creditors and debt collectors can do to pursue payment from people who owe them money. Multiple laws cover this topic, but the most important is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). Under this Act, it is illegal for creditors to threaten you in any way to try to force you to pay them.
Examples of illegal threats include:
- Pretending to be a police officer and threatening to arrest you
- Falsely telling you that you’ve committed a crime
- Using profane or abusive language
- Threatening to garnish your wages or seize your property when such actions are not actually contemplated
- Threatening to file a lawsuit against you when that is not actually planned
- Threatening you with bodily harm
- Otherwise threatening actions that are not legally permitted
For instance, if a collections agent insults you with crude language and tells you they will call the police about your debt, that is illegal. Owing money is not a crime, and implying that you will go to jail is not legally permitted. Similarly, creditors can only tell you they are going to sue you, garnish your wages, or seize your property if they actively intend to do so. If it is implied that the creditor will take these actions if you don’t pay, but you are not served court papers in a timely fashion, the agent may have illegally threatened you.
The Difference Between Creditor Threats and Harassment
The FDCPA is one of the most important laws protecting your rights as someone who owes money. Not only does it make threats illegal, but it also bans other forms of creditor harassment. For instance, your creditors may not threaten or do any of the following:
- Inform your friends, family, or colleagues about your debt
- Attempt to reach you at work
- Call you repeatedly with the intent to harass
- Call you very early or very late
- Lie to you about what you owe
- Lie to you about who they are
These acts are different from threats but no less illegal. A threat is a behavior that makes the debtor fear for their safety or reputation. Meanwhile, harassment is behavior intended to annoy, bully, mislead, or otherwise force the debtor to pay the creditor instead of pursuing alternatives or requesting a fair payment plan.
Protecting Yourself From Threatening Creditors
If your creditor has broken the law, our attorneys can file a lawsuit against the creditor. In most cases, our lawyers persuade the creditor to settle the debts in exchange for a dismissal of the creditor harassment suit. Our legal fees are paid by the debt collector.
Talk directly with a lawyer from our firm. Todd Friedman will save you time and alleviate uncertainty by looking at your case and providing sound counsel on how to proceed.
In the meantime, you have the right to protect yourself from creditor threats. We will guide you through the process of halting threats by:
- Requesting an end to communications. Under the FDCPA, you may send your creditors a certified letter requesting that they halt all communication with you, and they must honor it. After they receive the letter, they may only contact you to notify you of any legal action they choose to take. Other communications are considered harassment under the FDCPA and may be grounds for legal action.
- Documenting harassment and threats. Keep records of all communication with the threatening creditor. Save letters, emails, and texts where you can easily find them. If creditor calls begin with a message stating that the call is being recorded, record the conversation on your end as well. These records will help prove that you have been threatened and harassed by the agency in court.
- Reporting FDCPA violations. If you are still being threatened, we will help you file an official FDCPA complaint with the correct state and federal agencies. This is a necessary step before you can take legal action, as it informs the relevant organizations that a violation has occurred.
- Taking legal action against the collections agency or creditor. Finally, you may need to take legal action against the threatening party. We will work closely with you to pursue the best possible outcome. Depending on your situation, the attorneys at the Law Offices of Todd M. Friedman may help you file a lawsuit against the agency or pursue a settlement. Either way, we will ensure that you no longer face threats and harassment just for owing money.
Call Now to Put a Stop to Creditor Abuses
At the Law Offices of Todd M. Friedman, P.C., our goal is to help you fight for your rights when you’re being harassed, abused, or threatened. If you’ve received threatening phone calls from debt collectors, we’re here to help. To determine if you have a viable case against a creditor who has been threatening you, call 323-925-2659 or complete our simple contact form. We will help you schedule your consultation, where you can learn more about how our expert attorneys will fight on your behalf to stop the threats for good and pursue the compensation you deserve.