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Ohio Foreclosure Defense & Consumer Law > Blog > FDCPA Claims Creditor Harassment > I’m Being Asked To Pay A Debt That Isn’t Mine. What Should I Do?

I’m Being Asked To Pay A Debt That Isn’t Mine. What Should I Do?


According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, 44% of all complaints regarding debts are for debts that the complaining party doesn’t even owe. These could be debts that you have already paid off or debts owed by another party. You do have certain rights as a consumer to stop creditor harassment, dispute the debt, and avoid further attempts to collect it. However, you must be aware that the debt collector can continue to try to collect the debt even after you have asked them to stop contacting you in writing. In this article, the Columbus, OH debt collection harassment attorneys at Kohl & Cook Law Firm, LLC will discuss how you should handle a debt collector who is attempting to collect a debt that doesn’t belong to you.

Disputing the debt within 30 days 

You, as a consumer being contacted by a debt collector, can dispute that you owe the debt. However, you only have a 30-day window to do this after you receive notice from the debt collector. If a consumer doesn’t take this step, the debt collector will assume the debt is valid. Most people aren’t aware of this 30-day window and simply ignore the notice. But you should dispute the debt in writing.

If you need to dispute the debt or more information on the debt, you should put the request in writing and send it via certified mail to the debt collector. The CFPB has sample letters that you can use to send to debt collectors under various circumstances. You can use these letters as a template and change them according to your needs. They provide a useful foundation for consumers who want to dispute a debt.

Getting verification of the debt 

After you have sent a letter to the debt collector disputing the debt, the debt collector must send you verification that you owe the debt. It must, by law, stop efforts to collect the debt until the debt collector has provided you with verification. Under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, verification simply means providing the name and address of the original creditor or a copy of a court judgment saying you owe the debt.

Telling the debt collector to stop contacting you 

If you don’t think that the verification proves that the debt is yours, you can notify the debt collector in writing not to contact you anymore. By law, the collections agency must stop. By law, debt collectors are barred from calling consumers to the point of harassment. However, the law does not specify how many times a collector can contact you to qualify as harassment.

Talk to a Columbus, OH Debt Collection Harassment Attorney Today 

The Columbus, OH FDCPA attorneys at Kohl & Cook Law Firm, LLC represent the interests of consumers who are subjected to debt collector harassment. Call our office today to schedule an appointment, and we can help you sue a debt collector who is harassing you.

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