Being in debt will frequently lead to worry, fear and confusion as to how to get into a better financial situation. For North Carolina residents who are confronted with this problem, it can be made worse by aggressive attempts by debt collectors to get them to pay.
In some instances, they go well beyond the law and harass debtors in various ways. People who are facing this behavior may not realize there are laws protecting them or how they work. As a recent case shows; however, debt collectors who employ questionable tactics can be held accountable and the debtor can recover compensation.
Debts cleared after judgment against debt collector
A debt collector who was accused of illegally operating in North Carolina and harassing debtors there was ordered to compensate them for his behavior. A consent judgment was made in which more than 20,000 residents of the Tar Heel State will receive consumer debt forgiveness totaling more than $23 million. Complete refunds will be given to more than 650.
According to the attorney general, the debt collector took advantage of people in the state. The judgment stems from a lawsuit the state filed asserting that the debt collector’s company violated the law in trying to collect. Starting in 2012, the debt collector operated over the next six years purchasing debt from a retailer. They subsequently tried to collect on those debts despite failing to be properly registered or permitted to do so in the state.
Consumers were given court notices saying they were guilty of crimes and the property they had bought needed to be returned within 48 hours. These were phony. People were threatened in various ways if they did not pay. With the settlement, the company can claim it did nothing wrong, but is still obligated to repay and compensate consumers who were affected by the behavior.
Debtors can hold debt collectors accountable for wrongdoing
Debtors who are behind in their payments might be under the impression that debt collection and creditor harassment are simply part of the process and they should have expected it once they fell behind. In truth, they have rights and any form of illegal behavior should not be tolerated.
Just like this case, harassment and illegal activity can lead to the debt collector being fined and facing other sanctions. Debtors can even receive compensation themselves. For help with deceptive practices, violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, constant phone calls and messages, misrepresentation, threats and more, it is imperative to have legal assistance to put an end to the mistreatment.