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In 1977, Congress enacted the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) to eliminate abusive debt collection practices. The FDCPA generally covers the collection activities of debt collectors collecting on others’ debts and debt buyers (collectively “debt collectors”) but not the collection activities of first-party debt collectors (i.e., creditors collecting on debts owed to them).
The federal government for many years has received more consumer complaints about debt collectors than about any other single industry. Since 2011:
- The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has brought more than 25 debt collection cases against first- and third-party collectors alleging FDCPA violations or unfair, deceptive, and abusive debt collection acts and practices in violation of the Dodd-Frank Act. In these cases, the Bureau has ordered over $100 million in civil penalties, over $300 million in restitution to consumers, and billions of dollars in debt relief to consumers.
- The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has brought more than 40 debt collection cases alleging FDCPA violations or unfair or deceptive acts and practices in violation of the FTC Act.
- States have brought numerous additional actions against debt collectors for violating state debt collection and consumer protection laws.
The CFPB is developing proposed rules to regulate debt collection practices. The CFPB issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) for debt collection in November of 2013. The ANPR sought information about both first- and third-party collection issues including, among other things:
- The conduct of collectors in interacting with consumers in trying to recover on debts through the collection process;
- The quantity and quality of information in the debt collection system;
- Debt collection litigation;
- Recordkeeping, monitoring, and compliance issues; and
- How to address contemporary debt collection challenges, including questions such as how collectors apply the FDCPA to technology such as cell phones, text messages, and email.
This two-hour recording explains the current FDCPA requirements, recent enforcement actions, and the direction of proposed changes. Participants receive a detailed manual that serves as a handbook long after the program is completed along with PowerPoint slides.
Upon completion of this program, participants understand:
- The basic requirements of the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act;
- The connection between the FDCPA and Unfair, Deceptive or Abusive Acts or Practices (UDAAP) provisions as seen in a recent enforcement action against a large depository institution. .
- Recent CFPB and Federal Trade Commission cases;
- What the CFPB hopes to accomplish with proposed revisions;
- Scope of the proposals;
- Information integrity concerns;
- Review and transfer of certain information;
- Validation notice and statement of rights;
- Communication practices:
- Contact frequency and leaving messages;
- Time, place and manner restrictions; and
- Decedent debt.
The recording is designed for loan department management, compliance officers, loan operations personnel, loan officers, loan collectors and others involved in collecting debt.