Are creditors or debt collectors calling for you and leaving messages at your place of employment? They can’t.
In the State of Florida, creditors and debt collectors cannot call a debtor’s place of employment and leave a message with anyone (other than the debtor) unless the creditor or debt collector has either the debtor’s express permission to specifically do so OR has a judgment against the debtor from a court of law. If a creditor or debt collector calls your place of employment and does leave a message – no matter how polite and general the message may be – that creditor or debt collector has violated the FCCPA (and likely violated the FDCPA if a third-party debt collector made the call).
What must be included in the message to be enough to violate the FCCPA?
- Phone Number.
- Reference number.
- Request for a return call.
That is enough to violate the law. Said differently, the creditor or debt collector does not need to state that you are past due on a debt (e.g., does not need to disclosure the word “debt” or an “amount” to violate the law), tell the co-worker or boss how much you owe, or state that they think you are irresponsible. The creditor or debt collector must talk to you and you alone or hang up – anything else and they have likely violated the state and federal debt collection laws.
LeavenLaw and its attorneys were the first to litigate this issue in the State of Florida – polite calls with messages left with co-workers at a debtor’s place of employment and whether such communications violate the law. MRS & Associates argued that such messages were permitted. LeavenLaw, on behalf of its clients, Margaret Spies and Trustee Richard M. Dauval, argued that such messages violated both the FCCPA and FDCPA. In a five-count summary judgment, LeavenLaw prevailed, establishing law in a case of first impression, protecting consumers from work place embarrassment, invasion of privacy, and harassment. See the Order Granting Summary Judgement here: Dauval v. MRS BPO, LLC.
If you have received debt collection calls at your place of employment, with messages left, call LeavenLaw. Our attorneys can meet with you at a free consultation to go over your case and discuss defending your rights. As always, there are no fees and costs owed unless we win….and then they are paid by the creditor or debt collection. Call today to discuss your case.