Alert March 20, 2012

FTC Reaches $2.5 Million Settlement with Debt Collector

The FTC reached a $2.5 million settlement agreement and consent decree with debt buyer, Asset Acceptance, LLC, for violations of the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and the Federal Trade Commission Act.  The FTC complaint alleged that although the statute of limitations had passed on some of the accounts Asset Acceptance had purchased from credit originators, Asset Acceptance continued to collect on the accounts, misrepresenting to consumers its ability to collect on time-barred debts.  The FDCPA prohibits debt collectors from threatening to take any action that cannot be legally taken and from using deceptive tactics in the collection of debt.  The consent order contains a number of requirements imposed on Asset Acceptance, including providing a disclosure to consumers that it will not file a lawsuit on a debt when the statute of limitations has run.  Click here for the Consent Decree.