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FAIR DEBT COLLECTION

                        Provided By
                   Charley Brown's Office
                      Attorney General
                Consumer Protection Division
   Complaints ÿabout ÿharrassment by debt collectors are ÿamong 

the most numerous complaints ÿreceived by ÿmy Consumer Protection Division. ÿThere are both federal and state laws to protect ÿyou from unfair debt collection practices.

   A debt collector may contact you in person, ÿin writing, ÿor 

by phone. ÿHowever, ÿa ÿÿdebt collector may not ÿcontact ÿyou at inconvenient ÿor ÿunusual ÿtimes ÿor at ÿwork ÿif ÿyour ÿemployer disapproves.

   You ÿmay ÿstop ÿa collection agency from contacting ÿyou ÿby 

writing ÿa ÿletter telling them to stop. ÿOnce they receive ÿthis letter, they may not contact you again.

   No debt collector may threaten you with criminal prosecution 

to scare you into paying a bill. ÿA collection agency cannot sue you, garnish your wages, or seize collateral on it's own.

   Collection ÿagencies ÿcannot ÿuse obscene language ÿor ÿmake 

false ÿstatements ÿwhen collecting a debt. ÿIn most cases, ÿÿthe More [Y,n]? collector is ÿnot ÿallowed to tell anyone other than you or ÿyour attorney that you owe money.

   If ÿyou ÿshould encounter problems with ÿa ÿdebt ÿcollection 

agency, ÿplease contact my Consumer Protection Agency, ÿtoll free in West Virginia, at 1-800-368-8808.

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