The Telephone Consumer Protection Act: Your Right to Stop Unwanted Debt Collection Calls

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Woman being answering debt collection callsDo you wish you could make the nonstop debt collection calls end?  Maybe you fell behind on a bill. Maybe your payment is late. Maybe a creditor or some other business is calling you for no reason. Regardless of why a creditor is calling, the good news is, you can make the calls end!

The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) is a federal statute that protects consumer rights.  The TCPA prohibits automated calls, pre-recorded messages and text messages to cell phones.  A debt collection calls cannot be performed automatically, or “robo call” your cell phone unless you give them consent. If you give them consent, you can revoke the consent at any time.

Revoke Consent:

You can revoke consent to call your cell phone orally over the phone.  However, the best way to revoke consent and stop debt collection calls is by a written “cease and desist” letter. Send the letter via certified mail.  Keep a copy of the letter and save the return receipt.

Sending a cease and desist letter does not get rid of debt, but it should stop the calls. Which is solid first step in the right direction.

Document Continued Calls:

Keep a written record of the calls you receive after you revoke consent.  Keep a record of all calls if you never gave consent to begin with. Save all voice messages.

Damages for Violations:

If you continue to get calls after you revoke consent, the caller is likely violating the TCPA.  You may file a lawsuit against the caller for violations of the TCPA.

A consumer can recover:

1) Up to $500 for each phone call that violates the TCPA; and

2) Up to $1,500 for each call that counts as a “knowing” and “willful” violation of the TCPA.

Beyond that, if you think that you may be unfairly targeted by debt collection calls, Stevenson Klotz may be able to help.

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