Understanding Debt Collection laws in Illinois

Date Posted: October 23, 2023
By: Maggie Marques

Understanding debt collection laws in Illinois is easier than you may think. These collection laws are in place to protect you from unethical debt collectors who prey on consumers who don’t know their rights. Debt collection agencies in Illinois have many tools to collect debt, but consumers also have laws to help protect them. Here’s what you need to understand about debt collection laws in Illinois:

Federal and State laws

The Federal Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA)  and the Illinois Collection Agency Act (ICAA) ensure that debt collectors treat you justly. They offer protection, guaranteeing you fair treatment. Although debt collection agencies in Illinois are subject to federal and state laws, these laws don’t allow you to get away with any legitimate debt you owe.

Consumer protection

Here are some of the protections the FDCPA and ICAA offer for consumers:

  • No abuse, harassment, or oppression from debt collectors.
  • Debt collectors can’t use misleading statements when collecting a debt.
  • There should be no engagement of unfair practices like forceful acceptance of collect calls, pay for telegrams, or collect fees and interest in excess of the debt unless agreed upon.
  • When collecting debts, collectors must provide validation information about the debt – the first time they communicate with you or within five days upon initial contact.
Reporting unlawful debt collection

Do you think the debt collection agency is inappropriately doing something? You can report them to authorities like the Illinois Attorney General’s Office, the FTC, the Federal Trade Commission, or the Better Business Bureau.  You can even go as far as suing the debt collector in a federal or state court within one year of the violation.

Understanding Debt Collection laws in Illinois – Choosing the right collection agency.

When choosing the right collection agency, look for one that follows the law. Look for their license and check out what their former clients say about them. Check with the Illinois Attorney General’s Office and see if complaints have been filed against them. Remember that you are protected, so know your rights and where to go for help.

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