As of November 30th, 2021, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau enforced regulation F. This new regulation is a set of mandates that collection agencies must follow in order to abide by the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Regulation F will help consumers understand their rights when it comes to debt collection and also help to put an end to the harassment and abuse that can happen within the collection industry. This regulation has changed the way debt collectors can communicate, send notices, and has put certain restrictions on time barred debts and credit reporting.
There were a few key areas that Regulation F has changed regarding the way debt collectors can communicate with consumers. The frequency of communication has been one of the issues within the collection industry that often leads consumers to believe that they are being harassed. In turn, Regulation F has limited the number of times a debt collector can attempt to communicate with a consumer no more than 7 times in a 7-day time frame, this includes communications through phone, text, email, and notices. If a collector has a conversation with a consumer, then they are not able to speak to them for 7 days after that communication unless the consumer informs the collector that it is okay to do so. The bureau has made these changes in hope to limit the number of harassment complaints made by consumers.
Another aspect of collections that was changed due to Regulation F was the validation notice. The bureau has made it a requirement to have the amount owed, original creditor, itemization date, a link to the bureau’s website, and state that the debt is valid unless disputed within 30 days of receiving the notice. The CFPB has a sample validation notice on their website that collection agencies can use to make sure that they are following all these changes to the notices. The changes made to the validation notice will help consumers easily recognize the debt if they do not recognize what steps they can take from there. This will also help consumers better understand their rights when it comes to debt collection.
Lastly, Regulation F has made additional changes on time barred debts and credit reporting. Time barred debts are when a bill has passed the statute of limitations which varies from state to state. Once a bill has passed the statute of limitations, Regulation F allows the collector to still collect the debt, but they can no longer take legal action on the debt. Regulation F has also changed credit reporting as well. Now collection agencies are no longer able to report any bills to a credit reporting agency unless they have spoken to the debtor. These two rules will help consumers financial well-being and will also make them feel like they are not being harassed over an older debts.
Overall, Regulation F has changed how collection agencies operate and has helped consumers better understand their rights and what to do when they find themselves in a situation where they are in collections. For a helpful article to see what to do if you are in collection click here. There are also other helpful articles at www.skylinehf.com to help the you learn more about the collection industry.