– Consumer Affairs Director David Szuchman
today appeared before the State Assembly’s
Consumer Affairs Committee and testified in
support of proposed legislation that would
give the Division oversight of the debt collection
The Committee voted to report
A2493, “The New Jersey Fair Debt Collection
Practices Act,” out to the full Assembly
for its consideration.
“The Division received
787 consumer complaints related to debt collection
last year, our second largest category of
complaints,” Szuchman said. “Currently,
we lack the proper tools to handle these complaints
and most are forwarded to the Federal Trade
Commission. We’ve been seeking this
legislation because the need, as shown by
the volume of complaints, exists.”
Szuchman noted the existing
federal law contemplates that states will
enact their own laws to provide consumers
with greater protection, as A2493 would do.
A2493 also establishes standardized procedures
for the industry.
“Creditors have to have
the ability to enforce and collect debts or
they will be reluctant to provide credit.
Credit is a vital feature of our economy,”
Szuchman said. “This bill will place
reasonable boundaries on the kinds of activities
that debt collectors can employ but it does
not void consumers’ obligations to pay