Seminar Paper On The Fair Credit Reporting Act Related To Debt Collectors – Part One – Introduction

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We recently were asked to present a seminar at the University of Alabama that was attended by consumer lawyers and collection lawyers. We prepared a written paper to go with the presentation and we will attach the entire paper as a pdf but for now we will put it up in sections over the next several days.

We hope this will be helpful. If you have any questions about debt collectors and how credit reports relate to them, please let us know.

I. INTRODUCTION
Debt collectors can use the reporting of a debt to a consumer reporting agency (CRA) as a “powerful tool designed, in part, to wrench compliance with payment terms . . . .” Rivera v. Bank One, 145 F.R.D. 614 (D.P.R. 1993).

The fact that reporting debts owed by consumers is a powerful tool cannot be questioned. Nevertheless, is it a dangerous tool? If the area of credit reports is mishandled in one of several ways then this powerful tool can become extraordinarily dangerous for the debt collector.
We will look at three main areas. First, an overview of the FCRA. Second, when can debt collectors pull the credit reports of consumers who owe money? Finally, what are the dangers for debt collectors reporting information to the CRAs when the consumer disputes the accuracy of the information reported?

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