FTC Workshop: Debt Collection 2.0: Protecting Consumers As Technology Changes, Project No. P114802
I really think that the FDCPA should set a limit on the number of times a debt collector can call a person. 2 times seems enough, 3 is really pushing it. I think that calling any more often than that is harassment. Think of it as a hypothetical ex-mother/father-in-law wanting to call you. How many times would enough be enough? I think that the new FDCPA rules should expressly state that leaving voicemails or sending texts should not be allowed. You can't be sure that the person accessing the voice machine is the debtor (house guest, boyfriend/girlfriend/family member, etc). The same goes with text messages. I can change my phone number easily by visiting my local AT&T store. Who knows how quickly that number will be recycled, and then some other Joe gets a text message for them to call the collector. Most collectors I work with or have come across have the technology to identify the caller by the incoming phone number, which would essentially communicate that a debt is owed to a third party. As an anecdotal reference, I still get phone calls from people asking for the previous owner of my phone number, and I've had this number for over a year!