Debt collectors can be aggressive when collecting unpaid debts. Some try to bully you into paying. Many leave you feeling frustrated, embarrassed, and even traumatized. Many of their actions cause emotional distress.
Debt collectors are required to abide by specific laws. If they violate these laws, you may be able to take legal action. Many people wonder whether they can sue these people for the psychological damage they’ve caused.
Can you sue a debt collector for emotional distress?
What is Emotional Distress?
Emotional distress includes many negative feelings. It can include:
Emotional distress refers to the psychological harm caused by a traumatic or stressful event that affects your mood, emotions, and mental well-being. It can be caused by various circumstances, including harassment or the use of abusive or threatening language by a debt collector.
If a debt collector’s actions have caused you emotional distress, you may have grounds to sue them.
Can You Sue a Debt Collector for Causing Emotional Distress?
Yes, you can sue a debt collector for emotional distress. However, you can only do so IF their actions violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). This federal law protects you from abusive debt collection practices.
The FDCPA helps victims of unfair, false, or misleading collection tactics. Under the FDCPA, you can sue a debt collector for damages, including:
- Actual damages
- Punitive damages
- Attorney fees
- Court costs
How Do You Sue a Debt Collector?
If you decide to sue a debt collector for emotional distress, it’s crucial to hire an experienced attorney. Your attorney will review your case and gather all supporting evidence that shows the debt collector’s misconduct. This evidence may include recorded phone calls, letters, or emails from the debt collector.
Once your attorney reviews your, they’ll draft a formal complaint describing the debt collector’s illegal behavior. You can then file this complaint in court and begin the process of holding the collector accountable for their actions.
What Should You Expect?
It’s important to note that suing a debt collector for emotional distress will likely be a lengthy process. You will need to provide evidence that supports your claim of emotional distress, which may require you to gather medical records or proffer testimony from medical professionals who have treated you for emotional distress.
Your attorney will also fight to protect you from any retaliation or discrimination by the debt collector. The process may take several months or even years, depending on your case and the behavior of the debt collector.
If you’d like to know more about dealing with debt collectors or if a debt collector is causing you emotional distress, we can help. For more information, contact the Law Offices of Robert M. Geller at 813-254-5696 to schedule a free consultation with an experienced attorney.