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Are Text Messages From Debt Collectors Illegal?

Have you ever gotten a text message “alert” regarding a payment being due but you don’t know who it is from? If so, it was likely a scam or a debt collector that is acting illegally. The law requires debt collectors to tell you who they are, regardless of how they contact you. Additionally, it is unlawful for a collector to send you a text message or email in an attempt to trick or harass you into contacting them so they can collect the debt you owe.

Due to this increasing problem, the FTC announced Messaging for Money, which is an enforcement action against three debt collection companies. The defendants in the law enforcement sweep called “Messaging for Money” are known as Unified Global Group, Premier Debt Acquisitions, and The Primary Group. The FTC reports that these companies failed to identify themselves as debt collectors when they texted, emailed or called consumers. In fact, they often lied and claimed they were lawyers or government agents in an attempt to intimidate the borrowers into paying their debt. The FTC also claimed the companies sent abusive texts and emails or called consumers to falsely threaten them with lawsuits or arrest. The FTC charged the defendants with violating the FTC Act and the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.

It is important for consumers to understand that no matter what method a debt collector uses to contact you regarding a debt, there are certain rules that must be followed. Consumers have rights and it is essential that you protect them. A debt collector is prohibited from harassing or abusing a consumer. They cannot lie about who they are or misrepresent who they work for when attempting to collect a debt. Debt collectors are prohibited from making claims regarding actions they will take if they cannot legally take them. They also cannot provide false credit information about you to any third-parties, including credit reporting agencies.

Remember, getting a text message from a debt collector may not be illegal. However, if the text fails to provide complete disclosure or it is a harassing or deceptive attempt to collect money from you, it violates the law. If you are being harassed by debt collectors, let us help.

Fitzgerald Campbell handles debt collector harassment cases on a “contingency fee” basis, which means you pay us nothing unless we are successful! There is no charge to you for us to represent you. If we win, we will get paid. If we lose, we will not get paid. It is that simple. The law provides that if your case is successful, the creditor or collector will pay your reasonable attorney fees. Call us today toll free at (844) 431-3851 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation.

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