February 28, 2024

How Many Times Can a Debt Collector Call?

If you have ever encountered financial difficulties or defaulted on a loan or credit card payment, you are probably aware of the persistence of debt collectors. These professionals are hired by creditors to recover unpaid debts from individuals who have failed to meet their financial obligations. While debt collectors serve a valuable purpose, their tactics can be intimidating and harassing. One common question that many people ask is how many times can a debt collector call?

The answer to this question depends on several factors, including the type of debt and the laws in your state. However, there are federal guidelines that regulate how often debt collectors can contact you. In this article, we will explore these regulations and discuss your rights as a consumer when dealing with debt collectors.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is a federal law that regulates how debt collectors can behave when pursuing unpaid debts. This law outlines specific rules and guidelines that debt collectors must follow to ensure that they do not engage in abusive or harassing behavior. One of the key provisions of the FDCPA is the limit on the number of times debt collectors can contact you.

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According to the FDCPA, debt collectors are prohibited from calling you repeatedly or continuously in an attempt to collect a debt. Specifically, debt collectors cannot call you more than seven times in a seven-day period. Once they have spoken to you, they must wait at least six days before contacting you again.

State Laws

While the FDCPA provides a federal standard for debt collection practices, there are also state laws that regulate the behavior of debt collectors. These laws can vary from state to state, so it is important to consult with an attorney or consumer protection agency in your area to determine the specific rules that apply to you.

In some states, for example, debt collectors are prohibited from calling you more than three times a week. In others, they are only allowed to call during specific hours of the day. Some states also require debt collectors to provide written notice before initiating contact.

Your Rights as a Consumer

Regardless of the specific laws in your state, you have certain rights as a consumer when dealing with debt collectors. The FDCPA outlines several key protections that you should be aware of:

  • Debt collectors must identify themselves and provide information about the debt they are attempting to collect.
  • Debt collectors cannot threaten, harass, or intimidate you in an attempt to collect a debt.
  • Debt collectors cannot contact you at inconvenient times (i.e. before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m.) unless you have given them permission to do so.
  • Debt collectors must cease all contact with you if you request that they stop.

If you believe that a debt collector has violated your rights under the FDCPA or state law, you have the right to file a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) or your state’s attorney general’s office.

Conclusion

In summary, the number of times a debt collector can call you is regulated by federal and state laws. Under the FDCPA, debt collectors cannot call you more than seven times in a seven-day period and must wait at least six days before contacting you again. However, state laws may provide additional protections. As a consumer, it is important to be aware of your rights and to take action if you believe that a debt collector has engaged in abusive or harassing behavior.

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