Protect Yourself From Autocalls
In our last post, we discussed the specifics of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). This is in place primarily to protect debtors from the practice of autodialing on the part of creditors and collection agencies. Autodials are repetitive, inconvenient and, frankly, annoying. The good news is, you don’t have to put up with them. If you are receiving autocalls, and have either denied permission or have placed yourself on the Do Not Call registry, a debt attorney can help. Here are some steps you can take to protect yourself.
Make sure you can prove it.
When it comes to any sort of litigation, you must obtain proof. You can do this in a few different ways.
The first thing you can do is simply save the voicemails that are a result of an autodialed call. If you decide to consult with an attorney, these messages will go a long way toward establishing that the collection agency was acting inappropriately.
Another thing you can do is to take a physical picture of the calls as they’re coming in. Your phone will show the caller ID, in addition to the time at which the call was made. This can therefore reflect on multiple violations (calling too early or too late included.)
Speak to a debt attorney.
If you are receiving these calls after requesting that you be placed on a do-not-call list, it’s time to contact an attorney. Collection agencies and creditors are absolutely responsible for the actions of their company. You could therefore be entitled to damages anywhere from $500-$1500 per call.
But before you do anything, make absolutely sure that you have not granted your permission, even though you may not have realized it. If you placed your cell phone number on an original loan application, that can pass for a de facto stamp of approval. The best way to revoke their permission is to submit a request. Ideally, you should do this over the phone as well as in writing.
Remember, it never hurts to document. If you think you’re entitled to damages under TCPA, consider speaking to a debt attorney.