News & Resources

Bill may limit debt collectors'' ability to conduct ''robocalls''

Feb 22, 2011 Kyle Duncan

Many debt collectors employ the traditional practice of personally calling individuals or knocking on their front doors, but a new method increasingly used by collectors is under fire from the Federal Communications Commission. According to, the FCC is introducing legislation that would limit the ability of debt collectors to use robocalls to dial cell phones. The bill would not only cut collectors' access to cell phone numbers, it would significantly reduce the points of contact through which they reach the people they are attempting to collect from. Predictably, the bill is being met with frustration from the debt collection industry. "First of all, consumers are using their cell phones more and more, and most want to know if there's a problem or if their account is overdue," said Mark Schiffman, executive director of the ACA International Education Foundation. "If a debt collector calls and it's legitimate, and they can't get a hold of you, there could be a negative impact on your credit rating, you might go into default, and so on." Debt collectors may be left in the lurch with this new bill as more and more consumers move to mobile as their primary or only source of telephone contact points.