CFPB extends comment period on debt collection plan

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The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is extending the comment period for its debt collection proposal by 30 days to Sept. 18 to give consumer groups more time to respond.

In July, consumer groups asked for a 60-day extension due to the “lengthy and complicated proposal.” The bureau’s 538-page plan marks the first major change to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act since it passed in 1977.

For the first time, debt collectors would be permitted unlimited contact with consumers via voicemail, email and text messages, even prior to confirming that the person owes the debt in question.

But consumers would also be allowed to opt out of being contacted by collectors via non-telephone communications. Under the plan restricts, debt collectors can phone consumers no more than seven times a week.

The FDCPA prohibits debt collectors from making abusive, misleading or false representations and from unfair practices in the collection of a debt.

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