Alaska Debt Collection Laws

Those who fall behind in their financial obligations can expect to hear from their creditors or, eventually, debt collection agencies. In some instances, collection agencies have been abusive, harassing consumers in efforts to force payments. Federal laws have been enacted to protect consumers, particularly through the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Some states mirror those statutes, while others extend coverage further. Since those state laws vary widely, it can be vital to contact an attorney to ensure that every consumer has their rights protected in these vital financial matters.

Debt Collection in Alaska

Federal laws cover debt collection issues in most cases in Alaska. When there are abuses by unfair or unethical debt collection agencies, victims should report them to the state Attorney general’s office or a local district attorney.

Alaska Statute of Limitations

  • There is a statute of limitations of 6 years in Alaska law limiting the time a creditor or debt collection agency can file suit to recover debt payments, whether oral or written
  • Creditors still have the right to pursue debt collection by any other legal means, even after the statute of limitations for lawsuits has expired

Collections Practices and Rules for Alaska

While federal standards apply in Alaska for debt collection protection in general, the state does require that every debt collections agency be licensed and bonded. Any agency that fails to do so can be charged with a misdemeanor and receive a fine or jail sentence.

Legal Collections Actions

  • Debt holders and debt collection agencies have the right to communicate with consumers concerning unpaid debts by normal means, such as mail, fax, and phone
  • If debts remain unpaid, they have the right to pursue legal action within the state statute of limitations and to provide any pertinent information to the appropriate credit reporting agencies

Illegal Collections Actions

  • Deception or misrepresentation intended to intimidate a consumer into making payments that they are unable to afford
  • Making contact with consumers if they have requested such contact to cease, expect when notifying the consumer that creditors are taking some specific action
  • Harassment, abuse, intimidation, or threats
  • Making contact with consumers at their place of work if the debt collection agency knows such action is prohibited by their employer
  • Making repeated or disruptive phone calls to the consumer, especially at unreasonable hours (before 8:00 a.m. and after 9:00 p.m.), without permission

Laws for Debt Harassment in Alaska

Harassment is illegal in any form, much less when debt collectors harass consumers in hopes of forcing payment, according to both federal and state laws. Abuses can be reported to the office of the state Attorney general or through local offices of the district attorney.

Alaska Debt Negotiation and Settlement Rules

Consumers are protected not only from harassment and intimidation from debt collection agencies, they are protected from companies attempting to deceive and defraud them of fees through debt negotiation and settlement schemes. There are legitimate companies who provide services for consolidating debt and negotiating reduced debt payoffs when borrowers are significantly behind in their payments. However, scam artists promise to provide these services for high fees, yet once those fees are paid, they walk away, leaving the consumer in worse financial shape than ever.

In many cases debt settlement attorneys can help catch and stop these schemes and recover some or all of the stolen monies. In addition, these attorneys can often provide a more reliable form of these services to consumers:

  • Ensuring legal agreements with creditors
  • Overseeing regular and appropriate reports to credit bureaus
  • Avoiding tax complications that are unnecessary

Help from an Alaska Debt Collection Attorney

Because these legal and financial situations can be so complex and costly, it is important to enlist reliable and experienced advisors rather than having to face multiple expensive failures. A skilled attorney can often bring about the most positive and far-reaching solution feasible under difficult circumstances.

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