How to Stop Creditor Harassment in Maryland
One of the most common inquiries we receive is in reference to Maryland debt collection laws, and more specifically, how they apply in terms of collection agency and creditor harassment. The 5th and 14th amendments to the U.S. Constitution basically guarantee that no citizen may be deprived of property without due process of law.
In short, that is why the debt collectors send so many letters and make so many phone calls. The court process is a rather expensive and difficult process. Therefore, a creditor may do little other than to harass you into paying that overdue bill. Talk to our experienced Maryland bankruptcy attorneys to discuss your rights and learn how to stop creditor harassment once and for all.
What Qualifies as Creditor Harassment?
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, largely administered by the Federal Trade Commission, contains a variety of rules that define creditor harassment. Some are axiomatic and well known while others are a bit more esoteric and unknown. Generally speaking, the following constitute creditor harassment:
- Misrepresenting the amount owed
- Adding any amount to the debt
- Using obscene language
- Calling repetitively
- Calling before 8:00 a.m. or after 9:00 p.m., or on Sundays
- Calling you at work
- Threatening to sue you, if no lawsuit is intended
- Disclosing the debt to a third party
At least one debt buyer violates at least one of these rules every day. However, because of the number of debt buyers and bill collectors, the federal government has a difficult time effectively regulating this industry. That’s why it’s often up to you to take action to defend yourself, understand federal and Maryland debt collection laws, and work with experienced representation who can assist you with stopping creditor harassment.
How to Stop Creditor Harassment
The moment your attorney files a voluntary bankruptcy petition, creditor contact with you becomes illegal. This automatic stay makes bankruptcy the most effective way to stop creditor harassment in Maryland, or anywhere else. Unless they apply for and obtain permission from the bankruptcy judge, creditors are unable to take any action against you for the duration of your bankruptcy.
A creditor may attempt to flaunt the court’s order and continue to harass you. The debt buyer may offer an excuse about lack of notice or a technical flaw. Your attorneys can file an action with the bankruptcy court to punish the debt buyer for violating the automatic stay. Generally speaking, judges take a very dim view of persons or entities that show contempt for the judge’s direct order or the bankruptcy laws.
Facing mountains of debt can be stressful enough without the additional headache of constant harassment. If you feel overburdened by creditors hounding you about your mounting bills, one of our dedicated bankruptcy attorneys in Maryland can help stop your creditor harassment and help you set up a plan to get back on a firm financial footing.
Call us at 301-977-4300 for a free consultation and more information on how we can help you stop creditor harassment in Maryland.