Has a debt collector called you before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m.?
The FDCPA and the RFDCPA expressly prohibits debt collectors and original creditors from contacting you at any “unusual time.” An unusual time is described as any time before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. at your location. For example, when a debt collector on the east coast calls a consumer on the west coast at 8 a.m. eastern standard time, the debt collector is violating the FDCPA and RFDCPA. 15 U.S.C. Section 1692c(a)(1). Click here for a link to the code section.
There may be circumstances where a debt collector makes an honest mistake when calling a consumer in a different time zone and does not realizing that it is outside the allowable hours; however, the majority of the time, debt collectors are willfully violating federal law and hoping that you do not know your rights.
Our office represented a consumer who was repeatedly called before 7:00 a.m. by a debt collector. Although our client lived in California, our client's cell phone number had an area code associated with an east coast location. Consequently, the debt collector argued that they were not in violation of the FDCPA because our client's area code denoted an east coast location and the debt collector claimed that they had no knowledge that our client lived on the west coast; however, in addition to reaching out to our client by phone, the debt collector sent numerous letters to our client at their west coast address for over a year.
Because the debt collector had sent letters to our client's current west coast address, the debt collector was not able to effectively argue that they did not have knowledge of our client's location. Our office not only forced this debt collector to stop harassing our client, but also obtained a monetary settlement and payment of our attorneys' fees and costs from the debt collector.
If you are being subjected to harassing phone calls at unusual times, please contact our office for a free, no obligation consultation at 1-800-219-3577.