Published On: March 1, 2020


deficiencyThere are legal protections for the consumer if a creditor does not take steps to collect a debt in a certain period of time – referred to as the statute of limitations (in Arizona, depending on the type of debt, ranges from 2 to 6 years). Even though there is a debt, once it is beyond the statute of limitations the borrower cannot be sued.  But, debt collectors found a back door – they bully the borrower into paying “just a little” (somewhat like a whiny child).  The moment the borrower pays this “little bit” the statute of limitations starts all over.  The debt collectors are not required to notify the borrower about their rights.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau proposed a national standard for how debt collectors must explain to borrowers that they cannot be sued on an expired debt “zombie debt”.

debt collectors

Five Sample Letters to send debt collectors:

Wondering how to respond to a debt collector? Our sample letters can help if you:

* These letters are not legal advice. You’ll also want to keep copies of any letters you send.


debt collectionAn example of the Trump Administration working against the consumer: wants to allow debt collectors to call 7 times a week and text, email as much as they want, according to the Washington Post.

The Trump administration has been the war-path trying to limit the powers of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) because it was looking out for you and me, not the big banks, payday lenders, unscrupulous car dealers and others that prey on the consumer (you).  May 7, 2019 – issued a Notice of Proposed Rule-making to “modernize” the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) (which has been law since 1977).  The 1977 law did not address digital communications.

Debt collectors monitor your Facebook and other social media accounts

The report discloses that debt collectors monitor Facebook and LinkedIn accounts to find former employers and family members and contact these people, with the hope to put pressure on the borrower to pay, when many times it is not a valid debt (wrong borrower, debt paid in full or identity theft).

debt collectors


Many people, my Dad included, feel that if you don’t pay your bills, you deserve to be called every hour, on the hour, demanding payment.  In his mind, and many others like him, it is okay for debt collectors to call your office, neighbors, family and friends.  I remind him of the days when our family could not afford allowances or Christmas presents because his largest client had filed for bankruptcy (Dad was a mechanical engineer and operating out of our front room at that time).  Things were tight, but he does not remember that six decades later when he is financially stable.  Instead, he falsely assumes that everyone has a financially stable life and the reason someone does not pay their bills is because, they don’t want to.

Be Kind to Each Other

Our prospective of the world changes with each life change.  The loss of a loved one (perhaps the primary income producer) causes an extreme upheaval in your file.  A diagnosis of cancer – not only emotionally challenging, but also financially disastrous.Your life may be great today, but tomorrow it may fall apart.  Before you say something unkind – put yourself in their shoes.
By |Published On: March 1st, 2020|Last Updated: July 14th, 2022|

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About the Author: Diane Drain

Diane is a well respected Arizona bankruptcy and foreclosure attorney. As a retired law professor, she believes in offering everyone, not just her clients, advice about bankruptcy and Arizona foreclosure laws. Diane is also a mentor to hundreds of Arizona attorneys.

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