While collectors are generally prohibited from directly contacting individuals who are represented by attorneys or when an individual requests that communications be ceased, there are a number of exceptions that collectors should know, and many of them are included in the debt collection rule released by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
In this episode of “You Wanted a Rule, You Got a Rule,” John Bedard of the Bedard Law Group finishes off Section 1006.6 of the rule, which covers communications in connection with debt collection by going over some of the exceptions under which collectors may still contact individuals, even if they are represented by an attorney or if they have notified the collector that they want communications to be ceased.
Collectors, for example, are prohibited from directly contacting individuals who are represented by attorneys. But, there is an exception if the attorney does not respond to a communication from a debt collector in a reasonable amount of time. What is reasonable? That is a good question. Because the CFPB opted not to address this issue in the rule, Bedard offered the following suggestion. “I like for the collector to send a lawyer a written communication and say, ‘Hey, look, we’re planning to communicate with your client in two weeks, if we don’t hear from you, or within 30 days, if we don’t hear from you,’ ” he said. “Pick a time and put the attorney on notice that if you don’t hear from them in some reasonable period of time, you are going to communicate with your client and it lets that attorney know exactly what’s going to happen.”
Watch the video as well to see Bedard explain the exceptions under which a collector can communicate with an individual who has asked for communications to be ceased.
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