Debt Collection Laws

Debt collection laws regulate the manner in which creditors obtain payments from debtors. Collection itself may be performed directly by the creditor, or through a collection agency hired by the creditor. Both individual consumers as well as businesses may become subject to collections if they fail to make timely debt payments. Debt collection is often part of a general bankruptcy proceeding.

LegalMatch Law Library Managing Editor, , Attorney at Law

Debt collection is governed mostly by federal and state laws. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is one of the main pieces of legislation governing debt collection practices. The Federal Trade Commission Act (FTCA) also regulates debt collection. Most states model their statutes after these federal acts. Read more.


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Finding the Right Debt Collection Lawyers

According to most debt collection laws, it is illegal for a creditor or collection agency to:

Once a creditor or collection agency has begun collection procedures, they must disclose important pieces of information to the debtor. This includes the name of the creditor(s), the amount of debt that is owed, and the deadline by which the debtor must pay the debt.

Violations of debt collection laws are very serious and can lead to various remedies for the debtor. For example, victims of unfair collections practices can file a complaint with a government agency such as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Or, the debtor may be able to file a private lawsuit against the collecting entity in order to receive monetary damages for losses.


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