Complaints about debt collectors are on the rise throughout the country. It’s not uncommon for a consumer to feel they’ve been harassed by creditors and debt collectors. There are some basic rights that all consumers have when dealing with a debt collector. Here are some of these basic rights: A debt collector can’t call you at inconvenient times or places unless you agree to the calls. They also can’t contact you at work if you’ve told them either orally orRead more
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the government agency charged with protecting consumers against fraud, lists some important ways to avoid being a victim of fraud. Con artists often insist that people wire money because it’s nearly impossible to get the money back or trace where it goes. Don’t wire money to strangers or to anyone who requires that payment be made through a wire transfer. Don’t fall for sales pitches that sound too good to be true, like “97% successRead more
Until July 2009, Iowa victims of many fraudulent, unfair or deceptive practices had little recourse. Unlike almost every other state in the nation, Iowans had no right to sue to seek damages for most claims. They could sue for some fraudulent activities but faced burdensome legal requirements, like showing that the defendant had the intent to deceive and that there was clear and convincing evidence of the fraud. The plaintiff also had to pay all their own attorney’s fees, evenRead more
Federally insured student loans are subject to enhanced debt collection procedures that aren’t available to creditors and debt collectors of private student loans or to any other type of debt. For instance, the federal government can offset tax refunds student loan borrowers might be getting if they’re in default on their student loans. Before the offset can occur the Department of Education must send borrowers a written notice of the intent to take the refund. A borrower can raise defensesRead more
Despite the special protections given to student loan debt ( i.e. different discharge rules in bankruptcy, different garnishment rules, etc.), collection agencies that collect either federal or private student loans are still subject to both federal and Iowa fair debt collection laws. A debt collector that reveals private information to a third party, communicates with a borrower at inconvenient times of the day, telephones repeatedly with the intent to harass the borrower, contacts a borrower at work without permission, makesRead more
Welcome to the Iowa Consumer Rights blog for Nancy Thompson. I’m an attorney who has nearly 30 years experience advocating for consumers. We pursue fair debt collection violations by creditors and debt collectors, fair credit reporting violations by creditors and credit bureaus and consumer fraud violations by a variety of entities like debt settlement companies, creditors and others. This blog will help provide some basic information about the many difficulties facing Iowa’s consumers. If you have a consumer problem thatRead more
I am Nancy Thompson with Thompson Law Office. I am a bankruptcy attorney in Des Moines, Iowa and represent people in bankruptcy throughout the state of Iowa. Welcome to this blog on Chapter 13 bankruptcy.
Chapter 13 bankruptcy helps a person reorganize debts. Over a 3-5 year period debtors make payments to a trustee, who disburses the funds to creditors. Unpaid debts remaining at the end of the plan period are discharged, just as they would be in a Chapter 7. Secured creditors may be paid by the trustee or directly by the debtor. Unsecured creditors may receive payments if there is income left over each month beyond what is necessary to pay living expenses,Read more