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Can debt collectors publicly shame you on social media?

On Behalf of | Aug 26, 2022 | Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (FDCPA)

If you use social media to keep tabs on family members, friends or celebrities, you certainly are far from alone. In fact, according to the Pew Research Center, more than 70% of Americans say they regularly use at least one social media platform.

For many, a major part of using social media is crafting an ideal online persona. Even though you have missed a few credit card payments or fallen behind on your medical debt, you do not want your social media followers to know about your financial predicament.

Debt collectors can contact you through social media

Since the end of 2021, debt collectors have had the legal authority to reach out on social media to individuals who owe money. If a debt collector contacts you, the service should immediately tell you what debt you owe and how you can pay. That is, debt collectors should not be coy or deceptive when contacting you through social media.

Debt collectors should not publicly shame you

As you probably know, debt collectors do not have the best reputations. Indeed, they may use a variety of tactics, some of which border on shady, to try to encourage you to pay. They may not, however, publicly shame you through social media.

Rather, debt collectors should only send you private social media messages. If they post information about your debts publicly, you may have a legal cause of action against them. Keeping screenshots of public harassment from debt collectors is advisable.

Even though you do not have to worry about debt-related public humiliation on social media, there should be more to life than constantly trying to hide from debts you simply cannot pay. Ultimately, exploring debt-relief options can help you to become a more authentic person on social media.