Kudos to Providence lawyer and public relations strategist John Longo for standing up for consumers against the illegal and unethical practices of debt collectors. NBC-10 political analyst Jim Taricani reports the story:
Providence lawyer John Longo has filed dozens of lawsuits against collection companies. He said a debt collector can not threaten to call your supervisor.
“One of the more common things they do is threaten to call your boss or employer and disclose to them you owe a debt. That’s absolutely prohibited under federal law,“ he said.
The man who’s embarrassed about the credit card debt he can’t pay, said he was harassed and getting multiple calls each day.
“Three hours later, the same company called me again. I said, ‘I just got done talking to somebody who works at your company. I’m out of work and been out of work since 2007 and I don’t have the money to pay,‘“ he said. “I actually was put on high-blood pressure medicine because of the (harassment).“
Longo said once you tell a debt collector you don’t have the money, the collector is supposed to suspend calls for at least a couple of weeks.
Longo said you can put a stop to the nagging calls.
“A lot of good people are having a tough time paying their bills. Debt collectors are getting increasingly abusive and harassing to try to bully people into paying. They are not allowed to do that under federal law,“ Longo said.
Longo said debt collectors cannot:
– Call you at work or threaten to disclose your debt to your employer
– Call your friends and neighbors and disclose your debt
– Keep calling your home every day if you tell them you don’t have the money