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Debt Relief Guide

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Maryland Debt Relief Laws

When it comes to debt relief in Maryland, consumers have laws that protect their rights. Maryland Code Ann., Com. Law Sections 14-201 to 14-204 debt collection and debt settlement laws are very similar to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) which include:

  • Debt collectors cannot threaten you with violence or use abusive or foul language
  • Collectors cannot reveal your debt to anyone except you and your attorney
  • If you retain an attorney, collectors must contact you through your lawyer
  • Collectors cannot misrepresent themselves as being something other than a collector/creditor
  • Collectors cannot publish or post your name
  • Any correspondence must be in an envelope that only has the creditor’s name and address--no postcard correspondence can be used
  • You can only be contacted by a collector between 8am and 9pm (unless you’ve agreed to another time)
  • You have up to 30 days to dispute a debt--once the written dispute is set in motion the collector cannot contact you until it provides you with documentation

Consumers in Maryland have the right to sue a debt collection agency if it violates the law. In fact when it comes to Maryland debt relief, consumers can sue not only for actual damages, but also for emotional distress and mental anguish.

Maryland Statue of Limitations (SOL)

Maryland has a three-year statue of limitation (SOL) on open accounts such as credit cards, meaning that the creditor can contact you for up to three years. For written contracts creditors can also pursue you for up to three years.

Maryland debt relief means that the law protects certain areas of wage garnishment. Areas that are exempt include:

  • Social Security is protected under federal law
  • Pensions and retirement benefits--Maryland offers broad pension and retirement benefit protection which includes state worker pensions
  • Public benefits/assistance-- protection for workers’ compensation, unemployment, aid to families with dependent children and disability
  • Maryland provides protection annuities and insurances--including benefits from life insurance or annuity contracts, insured dependents disability and health benefits, fraternal society benefits as well as the amount of medical benefits taken from an employee’s wages by the employer

Maryland Credit Card Debt Relief Act of 2010

The Credit Card Debt Relief Act of 2010 has streamlined the methods for repaying debt and regulated how collectors work with debtors. The Act has impacted debt relief collections several ways:

  • The number of fraudulent or weak performing credit card companies are gone
  • Reduces the chances of falling victim to fraudulent debt settlement companies due to new Federal Trade Commission (FTC) reforms
  • Increased, open communication from creditors--more information is provided to help you eliminate your loans
  • Debt settlement companies cannot request upfront fees from clients

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