Harassment by debt collectors and agencies is against the law, in both federal and state jurisdictions, and no one has to put up with it. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act both prohibit unfair debt collection and information sharing activity that damages the quality of life and the credit report of any consumer. Many states have additional laws, making it even more difficult for collection agencies to abuse borrowers who have unpaid debts. In addition, there are many more companies who provide services to reduce or alleviate debt, as well as debt settlement attorneys who can provide legal and financial advice. There is no need for anyone to be a financial victim today.
Debt Collection in Nebraska
Nebraska is one of the many states that have enacted debt collection laws that mirror, strengthen, or widen the protections provided by federal laws in this area. In addition, they require that all debt collectors and collection agencies be licensed in the state. Nebraska residents can contact their state Attorney General’s office to report abuses and find relief.
Nebraska Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations period is a noted length of time in which a creditor, or debt collection company, can take legal action in court for a given outstanding debt obligation. Depending on the state, the start date of these dates is from the date an agreement is made, or from the last date of payment on a given debt, if noted by law. The jurisdiction of these statutes of limitations only covers the scope of any contract made in the state of Nebraska. The Nebraska debt collection statutes of limitations include:
- Contracts, both written or implied, have a statute of limitations period of five (5) years
- Real estate mortgage liens and product liability claims have a statute of limitations period of no more than ten (10) years
- Breach of sale agreement, contract, and open account agreements have a statute of limitations up to four (4) years
- Debts arising from malpractice claims have a statute of limitations for no more than two (2) years, while debts created by federal statutes without other noted limitations have a statute of limitations period of no more than three (3) years
- The statute of limitations period in the state of Nebraska is potentially restarted anew if creditor receives partial payment or some other form of acknowledgement of debt owed
Collections Practices and Rules for Nebraska
More than simply requiring licensing of all debt collectors and agencies, Nebraska has their own written statutes enumerating what such debt collectors can and cannot do in the state.
Legal Collections Actions
In Nebraska, it is legal to
- Contact borrowers to make appropriate demands for debt repayment, as well as to learn what property, if any, may be seized to satisfy past due debts
- Contact friends or family members to learn the location of the borrower and any other appropriate information if the borrower has provided written permission to do so
Illegal Collections Actions
In addition, there are actions that are prohibited in Nebraska statutes:
- Using threats or actual violence, obscene or profane language
- Harassing, by calling borrowers often or at times that are known to be inconvenient
- Misrepresentation of the amount or status of a debt, of the identity of the debt collector, of the consequences of non-payment, or of the supposed criminal status of the borrower,
- Revealing or threatening to reveal the debt status of the borrower
- Charging or collecting additional monies incurred in the debt collection process that are not expressly included in the original contract
- Accepting any check or other payment that is post dated 6 days or more without specific written instructions and conditions from the borrower
- Communicate with a borrower at their workplace if they have been notified that it is prohibited by that employer
Laws for Debt Harassment in Nebraska
Both federal and state laws prohibit any debt collector or agency from harassing a borrower.
Nebraska Debt Negotiation and Settlement Rules
The rules concerning debt negotiation and debt settlement companies fall under the rules of fair trade and commerce and preclude any business or service provider from dealing fraudulently with consumers. There are a growing number of debt settlement companies who fall into or close to that category, They promise to:
- Consolidate debts with lower interest rates and even lower principal in return for lump sum payments
- Negotiate with creditors to produce lower payments
- Report their payoffs and improved status with creditors to the major reporting agencies
Unfortunately, some companies charge high fees and supply little or no service. It can be helpful to have a debt settlement lawyer check the business record and contracts from any such companies a borrower considers.
Help from a Nebraska Debt Collection Attorney
There are legal pitfalls throughout the financial world. Hoping to avoid attorney’s fees by settling for unsubstantiated services can lead to more trouble, including a damaged credit rating for years to come. It can be well worth the time and money to consult a debt settlement attorney to advise clients in these matters and provide protection and peace of mind.