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Knowing credit card debt rights can help New Jersey consumers

Simply having credit card debt can be stressful enough. Add in harassment from debt collectors or non-stop, repetitive calls at home or work, and many people feel overwhelmed and even hopeless. New Jersey consumers facing creditor harassment for credit card debt should know their rights to protect themselves, and also understand how an attorney with experience in handling such matters could offer assistance.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is in place to protect consumers from abusive practices. This law was enacted in 1977 to help curb abuse by third-party collection agencies. It prohibits threats and harassment and has other safeguards in place for individuals with credit card debt.

First and foremost, debt collectors cannot call consumers repeatedly at work when personal calls are prohibited by company policy. Nor can they make false threats to sue the individuals or repossess their house over old credit card bills. Other banned coercions include threats of violence, harm and even arrest. Also prohibited is the disclosing of the existence of debts to neighbors and friends. Further, debt collectors are forbidden from using foul or offensive language.

The FDCPA also provides that if the consumer has secured the services of a lawyer, debt collectors are required to communicate directly with the attorney. New Jersey individuals feeling unsure of their rights or overwhelmed by credit card debt might find reassurance or help in seeking legal counsel from an attorney with experience in credit card debt and bankruptcy proceedings. These attorneys are skilled in such matters and have practice navigating the often confusing ins and outs of similar cases.

Source: creditcards.com, "Know your rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act", Connie Prater, Accessed on Nov. 19, 2016

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