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What types of debts are covered by the FDCPA?

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) applies to consumer debt incurred primarily for personal, family, or household purposes. This is basically any type of debt that was not incurred for business purposes and includes:

  • Credit cards
  • Home loans such as mortgages and home equity lines of credit
  • Health care debt, including past-due bills for procedures, diagnostic testing, and rehabilitation
  • Rental properties such as apartments and condominiums
  • Utility bills, such as gas, electric, phone, internet, and cable services
  • Car and other vehicle loans
  • Student loan debt
  • Internet loans
  • Payday and cash advance loans
  • Car title loans
  • Retail financing such as furniture and appliance leases

In order for the debt to be covered it must be owed by a person and not by a business. So if you have a loan in your business's name, it is not covered by the FDCPA. The debt must also be handled by a debt collector and not the original creditor to be covered by the FDCPA. However, in California, original creditors are governed by the Rosenthal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (RFDCPA) which mirrors the federal FDCPA.

Debts that may not be covered are those that are not incurred voluntarily, such as income taxes, parking and speeding tickets, and domestic support obligations like child support and alimony, or spousal support.

If a debt collector or creditor is harassing or abusing you and you are unsure if they are covered by the FDCPA or RFDCPA, please contact our office at 1-800-219-3577, for a free, no obligation consultation.  

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