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Vermont Debt Relief Laws

Vermont Statutes Annotated, Title 9, Sections 2451a to 2461 is very similar to the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. (FDCP) regarding of debt collector practices. Some of the rules collectors must follow include:

  • Collectors cannot use inappropriate or obscene language or make threats
  • Calls must be made between 8am and 9pm unless you specify otherwise
  • Calls made to you at work cannot be made if your employer disapproves
  • Debt collectors cannot correspond with debtors via postcard or use an envelop that indicates its from a collections agency
  • If you send a cease and desist letter via mail, the collector cannot contact you again except to tell you they are taking legal action against you
  • During communication (whether in person or by phone) creditors must state his name and not misrepresent who he works for (i.e. cannot say he is a cop or an attorney)
  • The debt collection agency cannot imply that you’ve committed a crime or threaten to sell your debt in an attempt to collect
  • You cannot be contacted by a debt collector if you are being represented by an attorney

Vermont consumers can sue debt collection agencies under the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act and be awarded actual damages.

Vermont Statue of Limitations (SOL)

Vermont 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 Vermont debt settlement during the time the account remains open.

In addition to Social Security, Vermont protects certain non-income wages from garnishment:

  • Pensions: Vermont protects state, municipal employees, teacher and even private pensions
  • Public benefits/assistance-- exemptions include workers’ compensation, unemployment compensation, crime victim’s compensation and veteran’s benefits and aid to the blind, aged and disabled
  • Insurance and annuity protection--Vermont protects annuities up to $350 per month, disability, fraternal society benefits and life insurance

Vermont 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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