Student loan debt has gotten out of control. Over $1 trillion in student loan debt exists throughout the United States. Out of that number, approximately $22 billion belongs to people in the state of Tennessee, according to an article found in the Memphis Business Journal.
That is only counting student loan debt. There are many other ways for people to become consumed by debt, and as a result, many people fear calls from debt collectors. One tactic they sometimes use is calling a person's place of work to reach someone who owes an agency money. Many people wonder if this is legal and what is possible to prevent it.
Is it even legal?
This area of law is tricky. There are some instances where it is illegal and other times where it is fine. For example, it is legal for a creditor to contact a person at his or her workplace. However, sometimes a creditor will sell the debt to a third party, and it is here where debt collectors often become more aggressive about collecting. A debt collector who is not the original creditor cannot contact a person's workplace. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act protects people from such acts.
What are some actions to take?
Initially, people should try simply telling a debt collector to stop calling at work. If that does not work, then it may be best to send a letter to the debt collection agency informing them of the situation. In some extreme situations, it may be best to file a cease and desist letter to stop the calls.
On the matter of wage garnishment, some debt collectors will try to speak directly with a person's boss. However, agencies can only garnish wages under a court order. It may be best for some people to speak with their employers about the situation and how debt collectors may call. That way an employer can request the pertinent information to see if wage garnishment is necessary.