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Know the signs of illegal debt collection in Illinois

When you owe money, it is possible that you will have debt collectors contacting you in an effort to recover a payment. At Ledford, Wu & Borges, LLC, we know that some agents may engage in illegal practices. When you can recognize these behaviors, you may be able to save yourself time and – more importantly – money.

As the Illinois Attorney General points out, debt collectors – which are separate from creditors – are permitted to contact you. However, calling you between 9 p.m. and 8 a.m. is not allowed, nor is calling you at work if the agent knows your employer disallows personal calls.

Within five days of making initial contact with you, the debt collector will have to put in writing to you how much you owe and to whom as well as how to dispute the charge. Failing to properly notify you could result in legal action against the collector.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act also prohibits agents from doing the following: 

  •        Threaten you with violence or other harm
  •        Use profane language when talking to you
  •        Place repeated phone calls with the intent to annoy you
  •        Misrepresent how much money you owe

Further, collectors are not allowed to make any type of false claim, such as alleging to be an attorney or implying that you have committed a crime. These agencies are not allowed to give credit reporting companies or anyone else false information about your credit, which could do serious harm to your financial future.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, you have the right to sue a debt collector if he or she has broken the law. This will not necessarily make the debt go away, but it could prevent you from paying money you do not owe. It also could help you recoup any money lost due to time taken from work or other damages you suffer.

For more information on your rights, please visit our page on fair practices.

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