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Louisiana Fair Debt Collection Practices Act

Louisiana Fair Debt Collection Statute

RS 9:3562

Part X. Collection Practices

Louisiana Fair Debt Collection Practices Act § 3562. Unauthorized collection practices

Except as otherwise provided by law or this section, the creditor, including, but not limited to the creditor in a consumer credit transaction, shall not contact any person other than an extender of credit or credit reporting agency who is not living, residing, or present in the household of the debtor regarding the debtor’s obligation to pay a debt.

(1) Notwithstanding R.S. 9:3513 the debtor may waive the benefits of this section at any time by giving consent, provided such consent is given at a time subsequent to the date the debt arises.

(2) The creditor may contact any person without the debtor’s consent:

(a) To ascertain information bearing on a debtor’s credit worthiness, credit standing, credit capacity, character, general reputation, personal characteristics or mode of living which is used or expected to be used or collected in whole or in part for the purpose of serving as a factor in establishing the debtor’s eligibility for credit or insurance provided such contacts are not designed to collect a delinquent debt, or

(b) To ascertain the whereabouts of the debtor when the creditor has reason to believe the debtor has changed his employment or has moved from his last known address.

(3) If the debtor has defaulted on his promise to pay, and if he has given specific notice in writing by registered or certified mail, instructing the creditor to cease further contacts with the debtor in regard to the indebtedness, the creditor shall thereafter limit mail contacts to one notice per month so long as the notice is not designed to threaten action not otherwise permitted by law. If the debtor has instructed the creditor to cease further contact, as heretofore provided, the creditor may make a maximum of four personal contacts with the debtor for the purpose of settling the obligation provided such contacts are not designed to threaten action not otherwise permitted by law.

(4) This section shall not prohibit the extender of credit from

(a) contacting any person in order to discover property belonging to the debtor that may be seized to satisfy a debt that has been reduced to judgment;

(b) making amicable demand and filing suit on the debt; or

(c) contacting persons related to the debtor if permission is specifically given in writing at the time the debt arises or at any time thereafter, provided that such contacts are reasonable.

(5) This section shall not limit a debtor’s right to bring an action for damages provided by Article 2315 of the Louisiana Civil Code.

(6) Notwithstanding the provisions of Paragraph (3), when the extender of credit has filed suit and obtained judgment he shall be permitted to resume contacts with the consumer against whom judgment has been obtained.

Added by Acts 1972, No. 454, §1, eff. Jan. 1, 1973. Amended by Acts 1974, No. 466, §2.

RS 9:3552

Louisiana Fair Debt Collection Practices Act § 3552. Effect of violations on rights of parties

A. Violations discovered as a result of written consumer complaint

(1) Intentional violations or violations not caused by good faith errors.

(a) If the court finds that the extender of credit has intentionally or as a result of error not in good faith violated the provisions of this chapter, the consumer is entitled to a refund of all loan finance charges or credit service charges and has the right to recover three times the amount of such loan finance charge or credit service charge together with reasonable attorney’s fees. The right to recover the civil penalty under this subsection accrues only after

(i) written notice is given to the extender of credit by certified mail addressed to the extender of credit’s place of business in which the consumer credit transaction arose;

(ii) a copy of such notice is mailed to the extender of credit’s agent for service of process; and

(iii) thirty days have elapsed since receipt of such notice by the extender of credit, and the violation has not been corrected.

(b) Except as otherwise provided herein, if the notices provided for in Subsection A(1)(a) of this section have been given by the consumer, the following acts by the extender of credit shall be presumed to be an intentional violation or a violation not resulting from good faith error:

(i) Failure to return or give credit for an overcharge in the loan finance charge or credit service charge or, failure to return a deficiency in the rebate within the time period set forth in Subsection A(1)(a)(iii) of this section when such overcharge or deficiency exceeds the greater of (1) ten percent of such loan finance charge, credit service charge or rebate; or (2) fifteen dollars.

(c) If the extender of credit fails to return or give credit for an overcharge or deficiency as provided in Subsection A(1)(b) of this section, in addition to the penalties in Subsection A(1)(a) of this section, the consumer executing the consumer credit transaction and giving the required notices shall be entitled to collect from the extender of credit up to one hundred dollars of his actual documented out-of-pocket expenses incurred as a direct result of such failure to act.

(d) In the case of multiple violations involving an overcharge in the loan finance charge, credit service charge or rebate of the size described in Subsection A(1)(b)(i) of this section, the extender of credit must notify the commissioner of the existence of such multiple violation and must give the commissioner a reasonable description of such multiple violation within thirty days after the receipt of the written notice from the complaining consumer, and the extender of credit must correct such multiple violation as to each consumer affected thereby within thirty days of the receipt of the written notice from the complaining consumer. Upon good cause shown, the commissioner may grant up to two thirty day extensions within which the extender of credit must correct the violation. If the extender of credit fails to give the commissioner the required notice or fails to correct such multiple violation as required herein, then from such failure it shall be presumed that such multiple violation was intentional or not in good faith.

(2) Unintentional violations or violations caused by good faith errors.

(a) If a violation of this chapter is not intentional or is made in good faith on the part of the extender of credit the court may require the extender of credit to correct the violation, but the consumer is not entitled to the civil remedies granted by this section; provided however the provisions hereof shall not protect the extender of credit if the provisions of Subsections A(1)(b) and A(1)(d) of this section are applicable.

(b) If the complaining consumer gives the extender of credit written notice as provided in Subsections A(1)(a)(i) and A(1)(a)(ii) of this section of an alleged violation of the provisions of this chapter, although such violation was unintentional or resulted from good faith error or did not in fact exist, the extender of credit must give the complaining consumer a reasonable response to the complaint in writing within thirty days of the receipt of written notice from the complaining consumer. If the extender of credit fails to give such response timely, the complaining consumer shall be entitled to collect from the extender of credit up to one hundred dollars of his actual documented out-of-pocket expenses incurred as a direct result of the failure of the extender of credit to comply with the provisions hereof.

B. Self-discovered violations

(1) An extender of credit has no liability for the civil remedies granted by this section in all instances other than multiple violations and whether intentional or resulting from good faith error or not, if: (a) within fifteen days after discovering a violation and prior to receipt of written notice of such violation from a consumer, or (b) within fifteen days after the occurrence of such violation, regardless of receipt of such notice from a consumer, the extender of credit gives written notice to the consumer or his designated agent of the violation and corrects the violation. If the violation consists of a prohibited agreement, giving the consumer a corrected copy of the writing containing the violation is sufficient notification and correction. If the violation consists of an excess charge, correction shall be made by an adjustment or refund.

(2) In the case of all self discovered multiple violations whether intentional or resulting from good faith error or not, the extender of credit shall have no liability for the civil remedies granted by this section if: (a) within fifteen days after discovering such violations the commissioner is notified of the existence of such multiple violation and given a reasonable description thereof, and (b) such violations are corrected as to each consumer affected thereby within thirty days after discovering such violations. Upon good cause shown the commissioner may grant up to two thirty day extensions within which the extender of credit may correct the violation. If a consumer delivers written notice of such violation at any time after the commissioner is notified by the extender of credit, it shall not affect the rights of the extender of credit to be relieved of liability as provided herein.

C. No act done or omitted in conformity with any advisory opinion or interpretation issued by the office of financial institutions at the time of the act or omission or subsequent to the act or omission shall constitute a violation of this Chapter, notwithstanding that after such act or omission has occurred, such advisory opinion or interpretation is amended, rescinded, or determined by judicial or other authority to be invalid for any reason. Advisory opinions and interpretations of the office of financial institutions shall not be considered rules requiring compliance with the rulemaking process of the Louisiana Administrative Procedure Act. The commissioner and the employees of the office of financial institutions shall have no liability to any person with respect to an advisory opinion or interpretation issued in connection with this Chapter.

D. Except as otherwise provided herein, any written notice required in this section may be mailed by registered, certified, first class, or air mail at the sender’s option. Proof of receipt by the extender of credit may consist of a return receipt executed by an employee of the extender of credit. Proof of receipt by the consumer may be a return receipt executed by the consumer. Proof of mailing any written notice may be a postmarked registered mail receipt, a postmarked certified mail receipt, or a post office certificate of mailing.

The written notice shall identify the contract, state the names of the extender of credit and the consumer, and shall include the date and a reasonable description of the violation.

In any case where the extender of credit must respond in writing to a complaining consumer, the written notice or other required written response shall be mailed to the last address contained in the extender of credit’s file on that consumer, unless the consumer specifies a different address in his written notice sent to the extender of credit.

E. Any civil action under this section must be brought within sixty days of final payment of the consumer credit contract, or in the case of a revolving loan or revolving charge account, within one year of the date of the violation.

F. Definitions of terms used in this section:

(1) The term “civil remedies” as used herein shall include civil penalties, attorney’s fees and out-of-pocket expenses.

(2) The term “good faith error” as used herein shall include errors of law as well as errors of fact.

(3) The term “multiple violation” as used herein means a violation which has recurred more than one hundred times as a result of a common error.

G. Attorney fees shall be measured by the time reasonably expended by the consumer’s attorney and not by the amount of recovery.

RS 9:3534

PART IV. LIMITATIONS ON AGREEMENTS AND PRACTICES

Louisiana Fair Debt Collection Practices Act § 3534.

Fees; attorney, collection agency

A. Any consumer credit transaction agreement may provide for the payment by the consumer of attorney’s fees not in excess of twenty-five per cent of the unpaid debt after default and referral to an attorney for collection.

B. An extender of credit may not contract with a consumer for the reimbursement of fees paid to a collection agency employed to collect the consumer’s indebtedness.

confidential informationThere may be instances where discussing your situation over a public forum could potentially compromise your interests. On these occasions we will contact you directly via email in order to answer your inquiry in a confidential manner.

6 comments

  1. NEED Help on how to address this matter. —–Received a letter from — Rausch, Sturm,Israel, & Hornik,LLC , Attorneys at Law.Dated March 30,2015. Stating, Re: Mark Lewis, Creditor to Whom debt is owed: Cascade Capital LLC assignee of Santander Consumer USA Inc. ( Citi – Serv ) , Our file number: 2108815 Account ************* 1000 Account Balance $ 6,610.68. Dear Mark Lewis: The above referenced account has been referred to to this office. The original creditor of the V account was Santander Consumer USA Inc. ( Citi- Serv. ). The amount due as of the date of this letter is. $6,610.68. Any further payments you make on the. account should. be made to our office rather than to our client. Payments can be mailed, made by. Phone or at our. website, http//www.rsieh.com. This firm is a debt. collector. Unless you notify this office within 30 days. after receiving this notice that you dispute the validity ofthe debt or any portion thereof, this office will assume this debt is valid. If you notify this office in writing within 30 days aftet receipt of this letter that you dispute the validity of the debt or any pirtion thereof, we will obtain verification of the debt or a copy of a judgment.,if any, and mail you a copy of such verification or judgment. Upon your written request within 30 days after receipt of this letter we will provide the name and address of the original creditor, if different from the current creditor. This is an attempt to collect a debt. Any information obtained will be used for that purpose. If you have any questions

  2. We have rented a property from a company for the past 8 years. They have sent us requests for delinquent charges in which we have disputed in writing to them. Today while going to my mailbox I found a piece of paper in my front yard blowing around which apparently had been stuck in my front door. It was an eviction notice for late fees totaling 131.00. My question is this legal placing this to be blown around for my neighbors to see and not sending it certified mail to my husband and myself. What if I had not found this paper?

  3. I received a phone call from a restricted number yesterday, I missed the call and they left a voicemail. The voicemail stated my name and the name of a John Scott. He said he would be coming to my home on Monday regarding debt I owed and papers he needed me to sign. I called the phone number he left and they told me about a payday loan that was taken out in my name. I did not become aware of this loan until I threw my ex out. He handled finances through my acct and opened a loan online using my bank acct. I know I am responsible. However, I have received nothing by mail regarding this and have no clue who these men were that called me yesterday. They only identified the company as Holdings and can they legal threaten to or show up and do I have to sign papers if they do.

  4. Natrena Knights

    I had a credit card in Colorado in 2003. I was not able to keep payments up for I was a single parent going to school. I was sent to a collection called Machol & Jahannes Attorneys at Law in Denver Colorado. They sent me court papers in 2004. I had started to make some payments but could not afford the payments for I was still in school in Colorado. I received letters and calls still. I finally finished school in 2011 and had several deaths in the family. I had to move back to Louisiana with my child. I had not heard from them until in November 2015 with a court order from Colorado. I tried to contact the courthouse in Colorado to see what could I do but no one answered. I had not heard from them until April 2016. When I received a payroll garnishment on my job in the state Louisiana without any notice. So I called collection company several times and left several messages. I had called another day and a gentleman named Raymond notated that I wanted to began the dispute process. He did not give any attitude about my desire. Shortly after I was able to speak with the specialized representative for my case several days later. However, she stated had not called me for she had personal issues during that time. After that I started to ask her questions and she could not answer them. She had begun to lie that I had never called or made any payments on my account. She began to get frustrated with me and finally had her supervisor contacted me. Also she was getting very upset with me for the questions I was asking her, she could not answer them. I asked her was I going to get all my paperwork. She told me that I could go to El Paso County Courthouse and acquire all my paperwork. Then I stated that I was in the state of Louisiana. She became withdrawn from the conversation. So I tried to write a debt validation letter and I went into my account with Lexington Law asking for them to dispute the case. Keep in mind the collection company told me that I was suppose to receive my paperwork last week and I have not received anything from them. So I called yesterday and the representative said that they are waiting for papers from the original company that the debt was from. I told the representative that I have only 30 days to dispute my case and I have not received my paperwork from them. The representative could not give me the day the company sent paperwork to the state of Louisiana granting the court order from the 13 year old Colorado debt .However, the garnishment from the state of Colorado is still being granted in the Monroe City School District and I have not received any paperwork from Louisiana courts. I just received the paperwork from my job today. The original debt is $1015.00 however, they are stating that I owe over $5100.00.

  5. I am behind on a debt as life has changed and I can no longer afford the note, they agreed to take $80.00 per month. I had someone go to their office and pay a bill for me, the 1st time she went to pay, the whole office, including the manager laughed and made fun of me in front of the person I sent to pay the bill. I did let them know I knew about it and was not happy. Today I sent her again to pay the bill, they send her back with a receipt that has all my information on it instead of just a receipt showing payment. It shows how much is owed, how much it’s past due, it shows everything. To me, they gave this person all of my personal information. Is there anything I can do about it?

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