May 2, 2013
Is a Debt Collector Bothering You at Work?
The Fair Debt Collections Practice Act offers clear guidelines about debt collection at work. Since some employers look unfavorably on debtors, the law gives you the right to demand that debt collectors leave you alone at work. There are several ways that debt collectors such as GC Services violate these laws.
Calls at Work
Under the FDCPA, debt collectors may not call you at work if you ask them not to. If a debt collection agency harasses you at work or interferes with your business, you can say something like the following. “This number is my work line. Please do not call me regarding this matter at work.” It can be helpful to mention that under the FDCPA, it is illegal for the debt collector to continue calling you at work. This informs him or her that you know your rights, so it may discourage other types of harassment.
Some debt collectors continually call employers to ask how they can contact employees about debt. It is illegal for a debt collector to discuss your debt with unrelated third parties, though it is not illegal to ask for contact information. If a debt collector continually calls your employer, it may be considered harassment. However, some employers discipline debtors if debt collectors continually call them instead of taking action against the debt collector. Thus, it’s a good idea to get an attorney if you or your employer is being harassed at work by a debt collector.
Voicemails at Work
Under the FDCPA, debt collectors need to clearly identify themselves as such when they leave voicemails on any line. In addition, there are restrictions on what they can say in voicemails.
Office voicemail systems are not private or secure; co-workers or employers may share or listen in on voicemails. Thus, a debt collector who leaves a detailed message on an office voicemail may be violating the requirement to avoid talking about your debt to unrelated parties.
For more information about the FDCPA, please contact our law firm.