Do you need a debt collection attorney to force a debt collector to stop trying to collect a debt that isn’t yours? Or calling you a dozen times each day? Or harassing you with threats? Each act violates the Federal Debt Collection Protection Act (FDCPA).
How do you find an experienced FDCPA attorney who will work for you?
You must pick the correct kind of debt collection attorney
You must drill down beyond the first page of a Google search. Here is why. The term “debt collection attorney” has several meanings.
First, it can mean an attorney who represents debt collectors. Her clients often are big companies that pay their lawyers lots of money to collect their debts. This attorney will never be on your side. Never.
Second, it can mean an attorney who represents both debt collector companies and people like you who are victims of debt collectors. “You cannot serve two masters” goes the old saying. Your common sense should tell you that this attorney will serve his collection company clients first because their fees pay his bills. You could not be certain that this attorney is 100% on your side.
Third, debt collection attorney can mean an attorney who only represents debtors. This is who you want. You want a debtor attorney who is 100% committed to your case.
You must pick a debt collection attorney who specifically represents debtors with FDCPA issues.
Think of it this way. You would see a doctor if you needed a knee replacement, but you would hire an orthopedic surgeon, not a brain surgeon. Similarly, you must drill down further with you search for your attorney. You want to hire a debtor attorney with specific knowledge and experience about FDCPA issues, not a debtor attorney primarily represents consumers with bankruptcy, real estate, credit repair, or credit relief issues.
You rightfully can expect a highly-qualified FDCPA debtor attorney to be experienced from handling many cases like yours. He/she also will have a thorough knowledge of the complex federal FDCPA law and the companion consumer laws of your state. He/she is not likely to be outsmarted by the debt collector’s attorney.
How do I select my highly qualified debt collection attorney?
Here are suggestions compiled from the lists of the American Bar Association, Federal Trade Commission, Consumer Financial Protection Agency, HUFFPOST, and Investopedia
What is his reputation?
Check with friends and family. Check for consumer reports on Yelp or Avvo. See how his peers rate him on SuperLawyers or Martindale.
What are her fees and costs
Ask about her fees and when they will be paid. Ask about other costs such as copying documents, courier services, court filing fees, or research services. Be sure you understand what you will be charged for and how much. Get a written fee agreement.
What is his experience?
Ask about the lawyer’s experience with FDCPA cases. Ask how long he has been practicing law and what kinds of legal problems he handles most often.Ask if most of his clients are individuals or businesses. Ask questions that would help you determine whether the attorney has a good understanding of consumer law.
What is his/her opinion of your case?
Discuss the facts with the lawyer. Get her approach to your case. Beware if she guarantees an outcome or promises you a large amount. No chance of success can be guaranteed.
What is your gut feeling?
Does he appear honest? Does he appear thorough and responsive? The initial meeting can also help you to decide if he will be responsive to your needs. Ask whether you can receive periodic updates on the status of the case.
How I can help with the case?
Because FCDPA case often rely on your contacts with the debt collector, she should ask you for copies of all your records and give you detailed instructions about what else she needs. Your assistance may help reduce costs.
If a debt collector has been hounding you, to speak with a representative directly and immediately call 844-685-9200 for a free, no obligation case evaluation. Our attorneys have experience in fighting debt collectors and standing up for consumers. If a debt buyer has violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, you’re entitled to file suit in federal court, and could be awarded up to $1,000 and other damages.