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Debt collection practices top New Jersey consumer fraud complaints

To mark the beginning of Consumer Protection Week nationally, New Jersey published a list of the top 10 consumer frauds complained of in the state in 2011. Every day thousands of unsuspecting people are victimized in a variety of ways, some leading to the loss of entire savings, forcing individuals and families to seek bankruptcy protection. While it is important to maintain awareness in order to prevent fraud, it is also comforting to know there are protections available to help people who have suffered at the deceptive hands of others.

In New Jersey, home improvement scams topped the list of consumer complaints, but complaints involving credit cards and debt collection practices were not far behind.

Unfortunately, debt collectors often go too far when trying to get consumers to pay debt. Sometimes their tactics are even illegal. Consumers who have been harassed by debt collectors should know that such inappropriate practices should and can be reported.

Sometimes it can seem like there is no end to the manner in which dishonest people and companies seek to separate unsuspecting consumers from their hard-earned money. For those New Jersey residents who have been victimized, the consequences are sometimes life-changing. Any individual or family who believes they have been subjected to fraudulent behavior would do well to immediately notify the authorities, as well as take stock of their financial plight. To that end, some may find that bankruptcy often offers a way to stop creditor harassment and provide a path to a fresh start by confronting nagging financial obligations.

Source: NBC New York, "Top 10 Consumer Frauds in NY, NJ in 2011," March 6, 2012

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