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Washington Debt Collection Defense Attorneys

Debt Collection Defense in Tacoma, Washington

State, and federal consumer protection laws encompass a wide variety of consumer protection programs aimed to protect consumers against exploitative and fraudulent corporate practices. In addition to the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA), and the Washington Unlawful Debt Collection Practices Act and Unlawful Trade Practices Act, our debt collection defense attorneys in Tacoma, Washington are well-versed in the most common consumer protection laws.

Some of these safeguards are enforced by government authorities, but many of them provide “private rights of action.” to individuals. When a customer is mistreated by unfair business activity, a private right of action permits them to take action and seek compensation. 

In addition to recouping damages, a private right of action may serve as a deterrence to the offending company and serve as a kind of legal protection for you.

At Northwest Debt Defense Law Firm, we have been providing legal services to people who have or are going through debt buying and debt collection for decades. Our competent Washington debt defense lawyers can help you ease your burden so that you can focus on getting your financial freedom back. 

  • What is A Debt Buyer?
  • What Should You Do If a Debt Buyer Sues You?
  • How Our Washington Debt Collection Defense Attorneys Can Help You Defeat the Junk Debt Buyer

Don’t wait until the last minute to take action. Avoid a default judgment and stop collection efforts by taking a step forward today!

What is A Debt Buyer?

You open your mailbox and find a copy of a complaint about a debt from a company that is unfamiliar. Your heart sinks. Even worse, an hour after you get home from work, you hear someone knocking on your door. You answer only to find yourself face to face with a process server and the unpleasant reality that you are being served with a lawsuit.

Every year hundreds of thousands of collection lawsuits are filed in courts across Washington. Once upon a time, we could almost always assume that if someone was sued they must have owed the debt to the company that sued them. Unfortunately, with the dramatic increase in debt buyer lawsuits, that one-time safe assumption no longer holds.

If you have been sued by a debt buyer then your first response was likely – who in the heck are these guys? You don’t recognize the company suing you and there is no reason why you should.

It’s an actual industry now: Companies buy old debts, usually from credit card companies, try to collect on them for a while, and then just sue debtors, get a judgment, often default, and then start garnishing wages and emptying bank accounts. If you have been sued by one of these debt buying companies, please consider putting us to work as your Tacoma debt collection defense attorneys.

Don’t wait until the last minute to take action. Avoid a default judgment and stop collection efforts by taking a step forward today!

Debt Buyers vs. Debt Collectors

Debt buyers are different from debt collectors. Debt collection is the process of pursuing payments of debts owed by individuals or businesses. A debt collector is a person or a company that regularly collects arrears owed to others most especially those that are past due. Some collectors may abuse their power and may tend to violate state laws just to get money from debtors.

It is important to seek legal advice from a seasoned Tacoma debt collection defense attorney to know the debt collection laws and protect your rights from abusive debt collectors who are crossing the line into unlawful territory. Debt collection is regulated by the Washington collection agency law to protect debtors from aggressive collectors.

The definition of a debt collector under this law is similar to the definition of the Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). This federal law prohibits a debt collector from using profane and obscene language, threatening actions, unfair tactics, harassment, and deceptive techniques to collect money on behalf of the original creditor.

Both debt buyers and debt collectors collect payment from debtors who are delinquent on their accounts. But while a debt collection agency typically tries to collect debts owed to other companies, debt buyers own the debt they’re trying to collect. However, a company that buys debt may still hire a third-party debt collector to do the work of collecting on the debt.

How Do You Negotiate with Debt Buyers in Washington?

If you’re delinquent on one of your overdue debts, your creditor might sell that debt to a “debt buyer.” Debt buyers purchase old debts from original creditors, such as banks, car loan lenders, and credit card companies. A debt buyer is different from a debt collection agency. Unlike a debt collection agency, which only collects as a service to the creditor, the debt buyer owns the debt.

If you find yourself dealing with debt buyers trying to collect on a past-due debt, it is crucial to know your rights and understand how debt buyers operate so that you can be in a stronger position to advocate for yourself. A credible Washington debt collection defense attorney can help you work out a strategy to deal with your old debts.

If the debt buyers try to contact you through phone calls or send you demand letters about a legitimate debt, you must first decide whether you should ignore the debt or deal with the debt buyer.

You can safely ignore the debt buyer’s demands if the debt is already outside the statute of limitations. A statute of limitations is the limited period creditors or debt collectors have to file a lawsuit to recover a debt. Most statutes of limitations fall in the three-to-six-year range, depending on the jurisdictions and types of debt.

On the other hand, if the debt is recent and you have assets or income that can be taken to repay the debt, you may consider dealing with the matter before the debt buyer sues you. In this case, it is advisable to seek legal help from a reliable Tacoma debt collection defense lawyer to help you negotiate a settlement with the debt buyer.

Don’t wait until the last minute to take action. Avoid a default judgment and stop collection efforts by taking a step forward today!

What Should You Do If a Debt Buyer Sues You?

Debt buyers often turn to the courts in their efforts to collect on a debt. If a debt buyer files a lawsuit against you, you are expected to respond and prepare any defense that you have to the suit. You may use the defense such as bankruptcy discharge or expiry of the statute of limitation. A knowledgeable debt collection defense lawyer in Washington can help you prepare for the possible defenses against a lawsuit.

When you respond to the lawsuit, the debt collector will have to prove to the court that the debt is valid and that you owe the debt. If you are sued, carefully read the lawsuit, and respond by any deadline. If you don’t respond, the court will likely issue a default judgment against you as requested in the lawsuit. The debt buyer may use different legal collection methods, such as wage garnishments or bank account charges to collect from you.

Defend the Rights of Individual Consumers against Abuse.

For example, the use of prison time or the disclosure of private financial information to co-workers, family, or friends are all common examples of debt collection tactics. Bullying debtors and flouting legislation are common tactics used by debt collectors who believe that no one would stand up to them and stop them from collecting. We’ll fight for you at Northwest Debt Defense Law Firm.

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Legislation was adopted by Congress as a countrywide program to address collection abuses like the ones described above and to give rules on the tactics a collector might employ. The act regulating legal claims about debt collection and allowing people to hire an attorney as a buffer against continual contact from collection agencies are some of the measures included in these rules. Do not hesitate to get in touch with our team if you have been targeted by these sorts of techniques.

Even when customers pay their bills on time and in full, creditors may still fail to correctly process payments or link a debt with the correct borrower in rare cases. These mistakes may seriously harm a consumer’s credit, making it more difficult for them to buy assets like automobiles and houses, as well as making it more difficult for them to find housing to rent. The Fair Credit Reporting Act was enacted by Congress as a response to these mistakes in credit reporting. The three main credit agencies now provide online dispute tools that make it simpler than ever to challenge inaccurate credit reports. Creditors may be sloppy and contemptuous even with these dispute options. Credit reporting companies and creditors that fail to correct erroneous information are targets of litigation brought by Northwest Debt Defense Law Firm.

How Do Debt Buyers Make Money?

Debt buyers do not buy one debt at a time. They buy large portfolios of delinquent debts from original creditors at discounted prices. Debt buyers are taking a big risk when they purchase these portfolios or “strips”. Usually, they are a mixed bag of different levels of delinquent accounts.

Debt buyers earn profit by acquiring debts at a low price and collecting them from the debtors. Even if the debt buyer collects only a portion of the amount owed on a debt it buys, it still makes significant earnings. Hence, you may get the best settlement offer after your debt has been purchased by a debt buyer.

How Our Washington Debt Collection Defense Attorneys Can Help You Defeat the Junk Debt Buyer

Unfortunately, most people who get sued by debt buying companies do nothing about it. This is why over 95% of lawsuits filed by debt buyers result in a default judgment. The sad reality is that once a debt buyer has a judgment and starts garnishing your paycheck or emptying your bank account without warning, it is normally very difficult to get a court to vacate the judgment.

The fact is if you act early on in the lawsuit you can save your defenses and in many cases, there is a good chance you can either defeat the debt buyer or limit the amount that you ultimately have to pay off on the debt. Many debt buyers do not have sufficient evidence to back up their allegation that you owe them any money or that they can sue you. Of course, if you don’t do anything, the judge just gives them an award for every dime they claimed in their complaint. And then they go after you like they never did before.

If you have been sued with a collection lawsuit, the time to act is now. You need to meet with an attorney to evaluate what defenses you may have and how best to deal with this debt issue. Our experienced Washington debt defense attorneys can help. At Northwest Debt Defense Law Firm, we battle with creditors and their lawyers all day long. Our debt defense law firm can help you understand your options and determine the next logical step.

Call our Washington Debt Collection Defense Attorneys for a free debt analysis or drop us the details through our online form.

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Northwest Debt Defense Law Firm

650 NE Holladay St, Suite 1640
Portland, OR 97232, United States

NW Debt Defense Law Firm is a Debt Relief Agency. Where appropriate we file petitions for relief under the Bankruptcy Code solely for consumers in the District of Oregon. We represent both Oregon and Washington consumers in collections law suits in Oregon and Washington state courts.


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