Debt Collection agencies like to use high pressure tactics such as calls to your place of employment, reporting to the credit bureaus, and threats of garnishment. Congress enacted the Fair Credit Reporting Act to provide protection against abusive and unfair practices. Some states have also enacted laws to provide protection for consumers who are dealing with debt collectors.
Statutes of Limitations: A statute of limitations on a debt is defined as the period of time following the last payment made on an account, during which a creditor can successfully sue for payment. Once the statute of limitations has expired, however, the debtor has an absolute defense in the case of a lawsuit. In other words, you no longer have to pay.
The statute of limitations in Florida is five years for written agreements and four years for oral agreements. It is important to realize that statutes of limitation on debts do not affect how long they may be listed on your credit report – generally for seven years.
What Collectors Cannot Do: In addition to their responsibilities as outlined above, debt collectors also are obligated to refrain from any type of harassment, abuse, or deliberate misleading of debtors.