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What are my rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act?

The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act was established in 1978 for the purpose of eliminating abusive debt collection practices by third-party debt collectors. The act applies to the collection of consumer debts—that is, debts incurred primarily for personal, family, or household purposes.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has primary responsibility for interpretation of this act. For more information, visit the CFPB's Debt Collection page.

Last Reviewed: April 2021

Please note: The terms "bank" and "banks" used in these answers generally refer to national banks, federal savings associations, and federal branches or agencies of foreign banking organizations that are regulated by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC). Find out if the OCC regulates your bank. Information provided on should not be construed as legal advice or a legal opinion of the OCC.

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