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Debt Relief Guide

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New Jersey Debt Relief Laws

Without a state fair debt collection law, consumers in New Jersey must turn to the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) for protection against illegal collection practices. Features include:

  • Collectors cannot trick you into paying for collect calls or telegrams
  • Debt collectors cannot threaten and misrepresent who they are or what their company does
  • Collectors cannot send correspondence in postcard form and can only display the agency’s name and address on the envelope
  • You cannot be charged additional fees from a collector for your debt
  • Collectors cannot publish or post your name
  • If you are being represented by an attorney, the collector or agency must work through that attorney and not you
  • 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

New Jersey consumers should file a complaint with the New Jersey Attorney General for illegal debt collection practices. Also, New Jersey consumers can sue debt collectors under the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and receive up to $1,000 in damages.

New Jersey Statue of Limitations (SOL)

New Jersey has a six-year statue of limitation (SOL) on open accounts such as credit cards, meaning that the creditor can contact you for up to six years. For written contracts creditors can also pursue you for up to six years. Consumers can consider New Jersey debt settlement during the time the account remains open.

New Jersey is protective of individual consumer rights and provides several exemptions for wage garnishment including:

  • Pensions and retirement benefits--in addition to state worker pensions, New Jersey protects pension garnishment of municipal, county employees as well as teachers and prison employees
  • Public benefits/assistance-- workers’ compensation, unemployment and crime victim compensation
  • Insurance and annuities, up to $500 per month are protected such as group health or life benefits, military disability, life insurance proceeds

New Jersey 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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