Debt Collectors Should be Banned from Collecting Time-Barred Debt, Says Consumer Group
Presently, it is legal to demand payment on debt that is otherwise past the statute of limitations,
Debt collectors, credit card companies, and other creditors, are currently permitted to make demands for payment on debt that is beyond the statute of limitations, even though they are usually prohibited from taking the extra step to file collection lawsuits.
This leads to confusion by consumers because debts have a dual status — creditors can demand payment, but they can’t necessarily file a collection lawsuit.
Furthermore, as debts age, there is often little information available about the account, making it nearly impossible to present evidence to a judge or jury showing that the dent is owed. For instances, the reports notes that “the original contractual agreement and evidence of payments are often lost, memories fade, and witnesses are less likely to be available.”
The report also suggests that creditors and debt collectors be required to provide additional disclosures, including stating when debt is being reported on a consumer’s credit report, and whether the creditor can legally sue for the debt.
In Massachusetts, for example, the statute of limitations on contract debt (which usually applies to credit cards) is six years.
Consumers in Massachusetts who are sued on a debt that is past the statute of limitations may have a claim under the Massachusetts Consumer Protection Act, M.G.L. ch. 93A, as well as the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, 15 U.S.C. 1692.
Debt collectors who may contact you in Massachusetts include Lustig, Glaser, & Wilson, PC, Cavalry SPV, Midland Funding, CACH, LLC, Kream and Kream, RCS Recovery Services, J.A. Cambece Law Office, PC, The Schreiber Law Firm, PLLC.
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