CFPB extends comment period for Fair Debt Collection Practices rule

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The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is extending the comment period on its proposed rule changes related to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA).

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The proposal is designed to protect consumers against harassment by debt collectors and give them more options to address or dispute debts. Specifically, the rule would set limits on the number of calls debt collectors may place to reach consumers every week. Additionally, it clarifies how collectors may lawfully communicate using newer technologies, such as voicemails, emails, and text messages, that have come out since the FDCPA was first passed in 1977.

It would also prohibit harassment or abuse, false or misleading representations, and unfair practices in debt collection. Further, it would clarify requirements for certain debt collection disclosures and require collectors to provide additional information to consumers to help them identify debts and respond to collection attempts.

“The bureau is taking the next step in the rulemaking process to ensure we have clear rules of the road where consumers know their rights and debt collectors know their limitations,” CFPB Director Kathleen Kraninger said. “As the CFPB moves to modernize the legal regime for debt collection, we are keenly interested in hearing all views so that we can develop a final rule that takes into account the feedback received.”

The comment period is extended to Sept. 18 to give stakeholders and consumers more time to gather data and prepare their responses. The proposed rule can be found on the CFPB website.

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