Falling behind on credit cards, mortgages and other loans is stressful enough without having to dodge the seemingly constant calls and letters from creditors.
It is not unusual for someone in this position to turn to spaces like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to find some respite. Unfortunately, this may no longer be a place to turn, either, thanks to a change to debt collection rules that allow creditors to contact people through social media.
A not-so-friendly request
Creditors have long used phones and the mail to contact individuals to solicit payments. However, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) now allows these parties to send direct messages through social media.
These communications can feel intrusive and threatening, considering how personal our social media presences can be. Depending on the creditor and your social media habits, logging on to sites like Facebook or Instagram may no longer be something you look forward to.
New method, same rules
While the ability to contact you on social media may be a new option for creditors, they must still abide by existing rules and restrictions.
- Misrepresent themselves
- Publish information about your debt in a public space
- Lie about debts
- Make threats
- Harass a person through annoying, bothersome communications
Further, users have a great deal of control over their social media presence and who can contact them. In other words, you do not have to accept a friend request from creditors; you can block users, delete messages and monitor what you post and what others post about you.
If you are a social media user, knowing that creditors can send you messages via social media can help you prepare for how and if you will respond.
In the frustration of situations like health problems or a job loss contributing to your financial challenges, people can rightfully feel harassed and overwhelmed by creditor behaviors. Under these circumstances, you may want to explore your debt relief options or legal options to stop the harassment. The attorneys at The Quinn Law Firm at 814-833-2222 are available to discuss these solutions with you. Call us today to schedule a FREE consultation.