Do all debt collectors have to identify themselves, verify the party they are speaking, and inform me call is being recorded?

UPDATED: Aug 11, 2012

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Do all debt collectors have to identify themselves, verify the party they are speaking, and inform me call is being recorded?

A debt collection agency called me didn’t verify who they were nor did they read me my rights (mini-Miranda) informed third party (my daughter) that I owed a debt before my daughter passed me the phone. They didn’t inform me that call was being recorded (and all licensed agencies do record calls). I asked for an OVD (oral validation of the debt) she proceeded to tell me the debt is not negotiable. I asked the collector to stop being rude. She hung up the phone in my face. I have every intent to pay the debt but I want to know why it is owed because I pay for tolls through a prepaid pass every month. I have 2 cars in my name, one in which belongs to my son. Their telephone number was blocked on my phone. The agency’s name implies that they may be a law enforcement agency. What legal action can I take against the agency? Will it be different because it isn’t a credit card based debt collection agency?

Asked on August 11, 2012 under Bankruptcy Law, Florida


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Different debt collection companies have different protocol regarding identifying themselves when a telephone call is made and who they are authorized to be making the call for. As a practical matter, you should request authorization in writing from anyone acting on behalf of another before you have any discussions as to the subject of the call so that you have written documntation showing any allege authority to act.

At this time you have no basis for a legal action in that you simply have no actual damages under the law yet. I suggest that you consult with an attorney that practices in the area of consumer law about how you should proceed concerning alleged debt collection companies calling you. You need to realize that there are many shams going on where a person represents he or she is authorized to collect on a debt for another. I suggest that you do not give out personal information to people who make such cold calls to you.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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