Iowa Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)
The Iowa Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) was enacted to protect Iowa consumers from abusive and deceptive debt collection practices. Unlike the federal FDCPA, the Iowa FDCPA applies to debt collectors collecting their own debt. The Iowa FDCPA sets legal requirements debt collectors must comply with when collecting debt. Unfortunately, many collectors and collection agencies ignore the law and will violate your rights on a regular basis if you let them. If you believe your rights have been violated, contact us for a free consultation.
Common Violations of the Iowa FDCPA include:
- Calling consumers at work when the debt collector knows or should know that the consumer is not permitted to have such calls.
- Contacting neighbors, friends, family members, employers (with exceptions) or others not legally responsible for paying the debt.
- Contacting the consumer when it is, or should be known the consumer is represented by an attorney. (An inexpensive no contact letter from a lawyer is the fastest way to get phone calls stopped. Click HERE to talk with the Johnson Law Firm about sending a cease communication letter.)
- Causing the telephone to ring or engaging a person in a telephone conversation repeatedly, with the intent to annoy, abuse or harass.
- Using obscene or insulting language that is intended to abuse the consumer (for example: a debt collector cannot swear at you or be insulting or demeaning).
- Calling at inconvenient times or before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. 7 days a week.
- Threatening to take actions that cannot legally be taken or that the debt collector does not intend to take. This commonly includes false threats to file lawsuit or to garnish Social Security or other exempt funds.
- Threatening to file a lawsuit on an old debt beyond the Statute of Limitations (most commonly five years for credit card debt in Iowa and possibly as little as three years depending on the terms of the cardholder agreement.
What the Johnson Law Firm May be Able to do For You:
- Require the debt collector to stop all contact with you immediately. The Johnson Law Firm can and will send a letter to the debt collector informing it that you are represented by an attorney and that all communication with you should stop immediately. If the debt collector calls or otherwise contacts you it is a violation of the law and you are entitled to up to $1,000 in compensation.
- In some cases the Johnson Law Firm may be able to assist you in reducing or completely eliminating your debt. We can do debt settlement and negotiate debt. Unlike most debt settlement companies, we are lawyers licensed to practice law in Iowa and can represent you in a lawsuit. With debt settlement companies, you are usually on your own once a collection lawsuit is filed against you.
- Recover damages for violation of the Iowa or Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act.
- Make the debt collector engaging in unfair debt collection pay your attorney’s fees. If you have an unfair debt collection claim against a debt collector the Iowa Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is a fee shifting statute that requires the debt collector to pay your attorney’s fees if you prevail in litigation.
If you feel that your rights have been violated please contact us to get information as to what the Johnson Law Firm may be able to do for you.