News, Developments in the Law, and Collection Horror Stories


David S. Osterman, Esquire

Appointments are available Tuesday and Thursday evenings and on Saturday mornings.

99 Middle Street
Manchester, New Hampshire 03101

Tel: 603-626-5452
Fax: 603-626-5453

Stop Abusive Collection Practices

Abusive collection practices and actions are against the law. Debt collection agencies are strictly regulated by both Federal and State government. The controlling Federal statute is called The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. In New Hampshire RSA 358-C, prohibits unfair, deceptive or unreasonable collection practices. Each of these laws governs what collection agencies may not do. A partial list of prohibited acts includes:

  • Telephoning debtors repeatedly or continuously or at odd hours known to be inconvenient.
  • Acting with the intent to abuse, oppress, or harass any person.
  • Using threatening, profane, obscene or vulgar language during conversations with a debtor.
  • With very few exceptions, calling a debtor at work is prohibited.
  • With few exceptions, discussing your debt with a third party is prohibited.
  • Threats of force or violence are prohibited.
  • Threatening legal actions which the collector does not actually intend to take, or is not authorized to take is illegal.
  • Threatening to garnish your wages for debts other than child support and taxes is prohibited in New Hampshire.
  • Every written communication sent to you by a collector is required to include specific language informing you of the collector's intent and your rights.

If you think that a debt collector has violated any of these rules, call us. If you have been subjected to harassing behavior not listed here, call us anyway. This list is not all inclusive. Many types of behavior not listed here can be considered actionable harassment. If you think that the behavior of a debt collector is dishonest or unfair, it probably is.

In almost every case we can force a collection agency to treat you fairly, as is required by law. We can stop the collection agencies from telephoning you at home and at work. We can also negotiate with collection agencies on your behalf to settle a debt for a reduced amount owed. We can also work with the agency to structure reasonable time payments for you.

And here's the good news. If you bring a lawsuit against a debt collector or collection agency and win, that collector or agency will be required to pay you money for each violation, and the defendant is likely to be required to pay your legal fees as well.

So call us. We will meet with you to discuss the facts of your case and your options. We do not charge for your initial appointment. We are usually available for evening and Saturday appointments. We take these lawsuits on a contingent fee basis. We do not get paid unless we recover money for you.

You have strong, well defined rights that protect you from abusive collection practices. Call us.