Collecting Consumer Debts: The Challenges of Change

FTC to Hold Public Workshop to Explore Debt Collection Issues; Agency Seeks Comments, Original Papers, and Participation

For Release

The Federal Trade Commission staff will host a workshop on October 10-11, 2007, to explore changes in the debt collection industry and examine their impact on consumers and businesses. The event will bring together consumer advocates, industry representatives, state and federal regulators, and others with relevant expertise to provide information on a range of issues, including the effects of technological, economic, and legal changes on the debt collection industry and whether the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and other laws have kept pace with the developments.

The event, which is open to the public at no charge, will be held in the FTC’s Satellite Building Conference Center, 601 New Jersey Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. There will be no pre-registration. For admittance to the workshop, all attendees will be required to show a valid form of photo identification, such as a driver’s license. Members of the public and press who cannot attend in person may view the event Webcast on the FTC’s website, www.ftc.gov.

Any person may submit written comments on the topics to be addressed at the workshop. Comments must be received on or before June 6. The FTC staff also welcomes original research, surveys, and academic papers regarding consumer debt collection issues. Such papers must be received on or before September 7, 2007.

The FTC staff also invites interested parties to submit requests to be panelists. Interested parties should include a statement detailing their expertise on the issues to be addressed at the workshop and complete contact information. Panelists selected to participate will be notified by August 15, 2007.

For further information about the workshop and for specific information on submitting comments, participating as a panelist, the event agenda, and contact information, please consult the FTC website at http://www.ftc.gov/debtcollectionworkshop.

The FTC works for the consumer to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices in the marketplace and to provide information to help consumers spot, stop, and avoid them. To file a complaint in English or Spanish or to get free information on any of150 consumer topics, call toll-free, 1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357), or use the complaint form at http://www.ftc.gov. The FTC enters Internet, telemarketing, identity theft, and other fraud-related complaints into Consumer Sentinel, a secure, online database available to more than 1,600 civil and criminal law enforcement agencies in the U.S. and abroad.

Contact Information

STAFF CONTACTS:
Frank Dorman,
Office of Public Affairs
202-326-2674

Thomas Kane,
Bureau of Consumer Protection
202-326-2304

Catherine Harrington-McBride,
Bureau of Consumer Protection
202-326-2452