Florida Debt Collection Harassment
There are Federal and State debt collection laws that protect consumers from unfair debt collection practices and Florida Debt Collection Harassment. Facing financial debt is hard enough without inappropriate communications and activities from creditors. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) provides protection from a variety of abusive, deceptive and unfair debt collection practices by debt collectors.
You may entitled to statutory damages up to $1,000.00, actual damages, and attorney fees and costs for violations of the FDCPA AND FCCPA.
While the FDCPA only applies to third party debt collectors, the Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act (FCCPA) provides additional protection against original creditor abuse. For any questions or a free consultation concerning an alleged violation, please contact Tampa FDCPA Attorney Scott Florin at Florin Legal, P.A.
Common Florida Debt Collection Violations
The debt collection statutes provide Florida consumers legal protection from certain forms of debt collection methods. Often times, Florida consumers are unaware of the consumer protections afforded under each of the acts, so please be mindful of some of the more common violations:
- Calling at a location known to be inconvenient, such as your place of employment or during inappropriate hours (generally between 9:00pm and 8:00am);
- Calling after being informed that you have legal representation;
- Continued communication attempts by a creditor after being informed that an individual is unable to pay the debt;
- Use of physical or verbal threats or acts to collect debt;
- Excessive calling with an intent to disturb or annoy;
- Acquiring an individual’s location information from another person, while stating that he/she owes a debt in order to learn of your location.
- Threatening a lawsuit or garnishment if you do not pay immediately.
These actions include only a few circumstances in which a debt collector may be liable for violations of the FDCPA and/or the FCCPA. As there are limits on the amount of time one can file a claim for FDCPA or FCCPA violations, contact Tampa FDCPA attorney Scott Florin as soon as possible if you believe your rights have been violated.
Unfair Debt Collection Damages
Unfair Debt Collection Damages for FDCPA Violations are set forth in 15 U.S.C. § 1692k and include statutory damages up to $1,000, as well as actual damages (stress, anxiety, humiliation, etc.), attorney fees and costs.
Likewise, Damages for FCCPA violations are set forth in Fla. Stat. §559.77(2) and include statutory damages up to $1,000, actual damages, attorney fees and costs. Unlike the FDCPA, the FCCPA gives the court discretion to award punitive damages as it deems necessary.
Statute of Limitations
The FDCPA Statute of Limitations is limited to one year from the date of the violation for most claims. [A recent Florida decision expanded the SOL for debt collection lawsuits filed in a distant forum]. The FCCPA Statute of Limitations is limited to two years from the date of the violation.
As there are limits on the amount of time one can file a claim for debt collection harassment violations, contact Tampa FDCPA attorney Scott Florin as soon as possible if you believe your rights have been violated.