Protecting Yourself from Collections Activities
A major event can quickly strain a person’s financial position and result in an overwhelming amount of debt. A change in job or income, an unexpected housing or car expense, or a medical crisis can quickly become detrimental to your financial position. Consumers may feel lost in trying to navigate their way out of debt, especially if their creditors are actively pursuing collections activities against them. Fortunately, an experienced debt relief lawyer can educate you on ways to protect yourself from collection activity and resolve situations where your creditors may be treating you unfairly.
If you are facing aggressive collections action from your creditors, you should talk to a debt relief lawyer to learn how you can protect yourself and protect your assets from collections. Georgette Miller & Associates can represent you in a variety of ways to help you resolve your debt concerns as well as protect you from certain collection activities, including holding your creditors accountable if they break certain laws and regulations.
Utilizing Attorney Representation
One way to prevent unwanted contact with a creditor is to hire a lawyer to represent you in your negotiations, disputes or controversies regarding your debt. Once you retain legal counsel, they can handle a number of your legal needs related to your debt including negotiating settlements, filing disputes, or filing your bankruptcy case. Additionally, your attorney can make sure your creditors are not violating any federal or state laws, even if unintentionally, as they attempt to collect on your accounts.
Federal Law is on Your Side
There are a number of federal laws designed to protect consumers from collection practices that could be unfair, deceptive, or otherwise harassing in nature. Federal laws you should be aware of and your attorney will certainly be aware of include:
- Fair Debt Collection Practices Act
- Unfair, Deceptive, or Abusive Acts or Practices
- Truth in Lending Act
These laws address how creditors and collection agencies communicate with consumers, what information is provided or is required to be provided to the consumer, and in some instances even put limitations on when a consumer can be contacted by a creditor. All of this is done to protect the consumer from situations that could put additional hardship on them: for example, it would be unreasonable to call a consumer at midnight to discuss their account, or it would be disruptive to call them repeatedly throughout the workday.
Creditors also have to disclose certain information to consumers regarding credit and loans so the consumer can make an informed decision about their credit use. For example, fees and charges for using credit must be made clear to the consumer upfront. By adhering to the laws and regulations in the credit industry, there is more fairness and transparency in our financial market. Though it may not always seem like it, the law aims to protect consumers. Georgette Miller & Associates strives to offer our clients peace of mind and protection in the financial industry.
If you feel your creditor has violated one of these or other federal laws in the financial lending and collection industry, you should talk with a debt relief lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your situation and whether you have been the victim of a violation. Your attorney will know the appropriate steps to take to give you the protection and remedies you are entitled to under the law.
Creditors Are Changing Their Practices
Whether a result of changing attitudes in the collections industry or a reaction to strict penalties for violating federal lending and collection laws, creditors have generally improved their practices to be less harassing to consumers. This does not mean that individuals working for creditors will not violate the law or the standards set by the creditor in interacting with consumers. If you are untreated fairly by your creditor or their employee, Georgette Miller & Associates can
As technology evolves, regulation and federal law needs to adapt to account for new ways of communication to protect consumers and ensure fairness. Unfortunately, technology is often ahead of the law in practice. While regulators and lawmakers debate the best way to address new avenues of communication to protect you, seemingly harmless contacts may be made which have the result of being unfair, deceptive, or harassing. This is why it is important to have a debt relief lawyer in your corner to stay abreast of trends and changes in collection practices and fight for your rights.
Options to Deal with Wage Garnishments
If you have a judgment against you as a result of a collections lawsuit, the judgment creditor may be able to garnish your wages. There are a few ways you can avoid wage garnishment, though you should discuss each option with your lawyer. Georgette Miller & Associates is experienced in many methods of stopping garnishments and protecting our clients’ financial situations. We will review your options and help you continue on your path to financial well-being. Some of these options are:
- You may have your attorney negotiate payment plans or settlements of the judgment on your behalf. If the proposal is accepted and you adhere to the agreed-upon repayment of the judgment you can avoid having your wages garnished through the court.
- Your lawyer may help you file for exemptions that will protect your wages from garnishment if you meet certain criteria. Georgette Miller & Associates can explain the particular qualifications of exemption and how they may apply to your situation.
- Certain categories of income are excluded from garnishment. Your lawyer can let your creditors know your funds are exempt from garnishment so you do not have to worry about even the threat of garnishment.
- Another option to stop wage garnishment is to file for bankruptcy. Once filing for bankruptcy, your creditors must obey the automatic stay of collections activities against you.
If there is any violation of state or federal law in attempting to garnish your wages, you can rest assured that Georgette Miller & Associates will pursue a favorable resolution for you.
Schedule Your Free Evaluation
If you need relief from your creditors, you should discuss your options with a debt relief attorney. Contact Georgette Miller & Associates online to schedule your free evaluation or call us at 866-964-6529.