Can a debt collector harass and belittle you?

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Can a debt collector harass and belittle you?

My boyfriend purchased a used car 3 years ago. He was to pay $80 a week. He kept up with his payments until last summer. Things got really rough for us but he never ignored his car payments. He paid what he could every week. The collector would call him and ask about the full amount that was needed to be paid and he told her that things were rough but he was paying what he could just to show them he was not ignoring them. She proceeded to tell them that he wasn’t being a man or a father because he could not make the full car payment.

Asked on June 24, 2011 under Bankruptcy Law, Indiana

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

The answer to your question is no, a debt collector can not harass a party nor can they threaten and certainly thy can not insult a person.  Familiarize yourself with the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) which was enacted to help safeguard against these type of calls.  Please make sure that next time you take down the name and identification number of the caller so that you can file a formal complaint.  You may also want to tell them that you are recording the call - even if you are not - to keep the "honest."  I would, though, deal with the car issue. Maybe re-negotiate the term for longer and less money to help you through these difficult times?  Good luck.


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