IfI was only notified of a debt 2 weeks ago, can a debt collector threaten to damage my credit and garnish wages if it is not paid within the next2 weeks?

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IfI was only notified of a debt 2 weeks ago, can a debt collector threaten to damage my credit and garnish wages if it is not paid within the next2 weeks?

I was as engaged and put my name on fiancee’s checking account. We broke up in 01/10 before the wedding. I forgot about my name on the account. He has since written bad checks to the tune of almost $500. Bank turned account over to collections. I was first notified of the situation 2 weeks ago. Debt collector says if it is not paid by 09/0it will ruin credit for 7 years. I won;t be abl to buy car, will garnish wages, will freeze personal bank account. Is what debt collector said true or is he just trying to intimidate me into paying? Seems to me that I should have more than 3 weeks to pay or make arrangements for payment plan without damage to credit.

Asked on August 24, 2010 under Bankruptcy Law, Michigan

Answers:

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

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Get the name of the person calling you and the business name of the agency.  Their practices are against the law.  Threatening a person is not permitted under legislation known as the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act passed by Congress.  They can say that they will turn the matter over to an attorney.  The line can be very thin as to what they can or can not say but if you feel as if they are crossing it I would report them.  Contact you state Attorney General's Office or, if they are out of state, you can contact the Federal Trade Commission. But remember: their behaviour, even if actionable, does not eliminate your responsibility for the debt.  You need to seek legal help in straightening that out.  And going after you know who.  Good luck.


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