Are Baby Boomers the New Target of Collections Harassment?

Oct 20, 2021 | Baby Boomers

Baby boomers (born between 1946 and 1964) are no strangers to carrying debt. Pushy debt collectors, on the other hand, try to take advantage of different factors when collecting from people of this generation. Consequently, it comes as no surprises that an increasing number of senior citizens file complaints under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).

Baby Boomers at the Receiving End of Collections Harassment

According to data released by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), around 20% of older consumers have reported that creditors or collection agents have contacted them to collect unpaid debt. Many also reported being victims of abusive practices. These include getting senior citizens to repay debt by using proceeds from exempt government benefits and trying to collect debt from family members of deceased debtors.

How Collections Harassment Usually Works

Unscrupulous debt collectors use different tricks of the trade to target vulnerable seniors, who they typically view as more susceptible or easy to confuse than younger generations. Besides, many senior citizens remain in the dark about their legal rights and the ability to get free legal help. As a result, they end up shelling out any amount of money that collections agents claim they owe.
Most baby boomers end up paying money they don’t really owe, either because they want the harassment to stop or because they’re made to believe they actually owe the money.

Signs of Collections Harassment and Other Violations

If you’ve been at the receiving end of unrelenting collection calls, there is a possibility that you’re a victim of collections harassment or some other violation. If this is the case, it’s best that you seek legal counsel at the earliest. Here are the common signs.

  • Undue harassment or abuse. If a collections agent uses abusive, profane, or threatening language, it’s a clear sign of harassment. So is any threat of violence or bodily harm.
  • Demanding payment immediately. Be wary of collections agents who demand immediate payments or insist on receiving payments only via wire transfers.
  • Repetitive calls. Making repetitive phone calls is in violation of the FDCPA and is viewed as harassment.
  • Disclosing details of your debt. If a debt collector discloses details of your debt to anyone other than your spouse, it counts as harassment.
  • False representation. Debt collectors who claim to represent a state or the federal government are in violation of the law.
  • Misleading information. Providing false or misleading information about a debt’s legal status or amount qualifies as a violation of the FDCPA.

Special Provisions for Baby Boomers

State and federal laws keep some types of income and property outside of the purview of debt collection. This include Supplemental Security Income, Social Security, veterans’ disability, unemployment/workers’ compensation, and public assistance benefits. What makes the FDCPA particularly helpful is that while it prevents debt collectors from using unfair practices, it also makes way for erring parties to pay consumers’ attorney fees.

Conclusion

Sure, baby boomers have become a target of collections harassment, although knowing your rights can help you steer clear of becoming a victim. If you feel you’re being subjected to any form of harassment or misrepresentation, seeking advice from an attorney who specializes in collections harassment might work well for you. This is because in case of a violation, you might be able to get the debt written off and even get compensated for your troubles.

PLEASE READ FIRST

MORNING LAW GROUP – FRESH START

    • A Fresh Start: On August 2, 2023, our firm, Morning Law Group, was approved by the United States Bankruptcy Court in the Central District of California to acquire certain of the assets of a law firm formerly known as Litigation Practice Group (“LPG”).
    • New Ownership, New Beginnings: Morning Law Group’s overriding commitment is to provide exceptional service, emphasizing transparency, integrity and client satisfaction. Our operations are completely different from LPG with a laser focus on client service excellence.
    • Past Reviews Do Not IN ANY WAY Reflect Current Practices: We acknowledge the presence of negative reviews stemming from the LPG era. These reviews reflect LPG’s past practices and do not represent Morning Law Group’s standards, ethics, or operations.
    • Commitment to Compliance and Excellence: Morning Law Group operates with the utmost adherence to regulatory compliance and industry best practices. Our team is dedicated to upholding the highest standards in every aspect of our work. To this end, we work closely with a highly-respected legal ethics monitor appointed by the US Bankruptcy Court to ensure we comply with the applicable rules.
    • Enhanced Customer Support and Communication: We have completely different and enhanced customer service protocols to ensure timely, and effective communication by people who are willing to listen. Our clients' satisfaction and trust are paramount.
    • Transparent Operations: Transparency is at the heart of our operations. We encourage clients and potential clients to reach out with any concerns or questions about our services or practices. Our goal is to keep clients fully informed of the status of their matters through regular updates by email and phone. We offer extended office hours to better service our clients (6am – 6pm Pacific Time) and we have a dedicated client services email to facilitate communication.  
    • Continuous Improvement and Feedback: We are committed to continuous improvement and openly welcome feedback. Our goal is to learn, grow and adapt to serve our clients better.
    • Building a Positive Community: Our focus is on building long-term relationships with our clients and the community. We believe in making a positive impact through our work and practices in helping individuals who are fighting debt.
    • A Strong Foundation for the Future: With a solid foundation of ethical practices, skilled professionals, and a client-centered approach, Morning Law Group is poised for a future of success and positive client experiences.