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Store allegedly pestered customer for $20 credit card bill

Laws may protect customers in New Hampshire and throughout the country from improper debt collection practices. A woman is claiming that a department store contacted her repeatedly and inappropriately to collect an allegedly overdue $20 credit card bill. The woman's personal debt increased to $100 for this credit card bill because of interest and fees for late payments.

The customer alleges that she got many illegal calls about the debt at irregular hours, including telephone calls in the early morning and late evening. The woman does not know if the calls came directly from the store or from an outside debt collection agency. If a debt collector made the telephone calls, the calls may have violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. The federal legislation prohibits telephone calls from debt collectors between the hours of 9 PM and 8 AM, unless the customer agrees to receive calls during those hours. Another federal law prohibits automatically-dialed calls to cellphones without the owner's consent.

Due to the harassing telephone calls, the store customer is refusing to pay the credit card bill. She is suing the department store, alleging violations of the laws that protect consumers from creditor harassment.

Debt collection agencies may attempt to collect debts illegally, as the woman in this case found out. A bankruptcy lawyer may be able to help consumers who want to stop creditor harassment. Not all consumer debts are as small as the $20 credit card bill at issue in this case. If individuals are struggling with debt, they may be able to get a fresh financial start by filing for bankruptcy. A bankruptcy attorney can explain the requirements and qualifications for a Chapter 7 filing.

Source: LowCards.com, "Woman Sues Kohl’s Over Harassment for $20 Credit Card Bill", Lynn Oldshue, June 26, 2014

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