When you have a past-due debt, there’s nothing illegal about dodging a collector. You can screen phone calls, hide and take steps to avoid speaking with the collector. Of course, the collector has a right to take steps to collect as long as they follow the letter of the law.
So does the law prohibit a collector from calling a family member, a friend or even a neighbor in order to collect on a delinquent debt?
You have a right to hide, while they have a right to hunt you down… but there are some limits to what they can say during that conversation.
Contact versus conversation
A collector is allowed to contact anyone – really, absolutely anyone they can think of or find – to verify that you are you. That is all they are allowed to do, though.
According to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) a collector can call anyone they can find in order to verify your identity. Basically, a collector receives your information from a creditor that you’ve failed to pay – they’ve never had any contact with you themselves.
Fact: The FDCPA was enacted in 1996 to amend the Consumer Credit Protection Act of 1968 for collections.