"It's crucial that the transgressions of the predatory debt collection industry see the light of day. All too often, debt collectors believe bulldozing consumers is part of the job. They need to know that they'll be called out for their bad behavior."
Stamford, CT (PRWEB) March 24, 2011
Consumer fair debt collection attorney Sergei Lemberg (http://www.stopcollector.com) applauded Monday's release of "Federal Trade Commission Annual Report 2011: Fair Debt Collection Practices Act," saying that it effectively undermines the debt collection industry argument that fair debt attorneys are abusing the FDCPA by filing frivolous lawsuits and are placing an unfair burden on third-party debt collectors.
The FTC report summarized consumer complaints against the debt collection industry and discussed the FTC enforcement activities. The report covered the 2010 calendar year, and indicated that the agency received more complaints about the debt collection industry than any other industry. Indeed, debt collection complaints accounted for 27% of all complaints received by the FTC. Moreover, the number of debt collection complaints in 2010 (140,036) far surpassed those in 2009 (119,609). Lemberg, who in 2010 was labeled by the debt collection industry as one of the "most active consumer attorneys" (WebRecon LLC), sees the report as vindication for those who are fighting to protect consumer rights. According to Lemberg, "The FTC numbers mirror what I've seen in my practice. Although the economic recession has put many consumers in an untenable position, debt collectors seem to have a Wild West mentality, disregarding the provisions of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act." He added, "The only redress consumers have is to sue the bad players in the debt collection industry."
Lemberg took exception to the debt collection industry's response to the report. In its press release, ACA International said that the FTC's complaint methodology "paints an interesting but inaccurate portrait of consumer complaints against the third-party collection industry," in part because the FTC's numbers include both inquiries and complaints. According to Lemberg, "Either ACA International didn't read the report, or it's trying to put up a smokescreen. The FTC report explicitly acknowledges that the agency receives both inquiries and complaints, but says, 'The data presented here include only consumer contacts that the CRC has identifies as complaints.' It couldn't be more clear."
The FTC reported that the most frequent FDCPA violation reported was harassment, either through repeated calling, calling at inappropriate times, the use of obscenity, and threats of violence. According to Lemberg, "The behavior of some debt collectors is beyond the pale, and exacerbates the distress that consumers with financial hardships already face."
He concluded, "Although the report is mandated by the FDCPA, it's crucial that the transgressions of the predatory debt collection industry see the light of day. All too often, debt collectors believe bulldozing consumers is part of the job. They need to know that they'll be called out for their bad behavior."
About Lemberg & Associates, LLC
The attorneys at Lemberg & Associates, LLC are experts in fair debt and lemon law, and practice in New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Texas, Mississippi, Louisiana, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, California, Maryland, Illinois, and Washington, D.C. Sergei Lemberg can brief you about the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, remedies available to consumers who are victims of debt collector harassment, and other relevant issues.