Frequently Asked Questions About Consumers’ Rights and Personal Injury in Florida
Answers from straightforward attorneys
With more than 20 years of experience helping our clients achieve justice for consumer wrongs, the Tischhauser Law Group has the qualifications to answer your questions. Below are some frequently asked questions to help you get started.
- Why did a collection agency contact me?
- Can I stop a debt collector from calling me?
- What can I do if debt collectors harass me?
- How do I know if I have a valid personal injury claim?
- How do the courts determine negligence?
- What is a contingency fee?
Contact the Tischhauser Law Group to schedule a consultation
We welcome you to our office to answer any questions or concerns you may have. Don’t be afraid to investigate your rights and legal options. An attorney from the Tischhauser Law Group can evaluate your case and prepare the information you need to proceed to trial. Call us at 813-666-8502 or contact us online to schedule an initial consultation.
Collection agencies call if they haven’t received an overdue payment from you, or there is a dispute about monies they claim to owe on an account.
On some occasions, if a person has used your identity to obtain credit, a debt collector may also contact you, because they are misled to believe you legitimately opened the account. As a victim of identity theft, you don’t have to pay the debt an imposter racks up in your name, but you may need an attorney to help you convince collectors of this.
Sometimes, a debt collector may call you because they believe you are responsible for the bills of another person, such as when you agree to be a co-signor on a contract, or allowed someone to be added to a credit card account, as an “authorized” user.
Regardless of the why ... the intent is always the same - to convince you, and if that doesn’t work, to coerce you, in to making immediate payment on the account.
Yes. You can write a letter to the collection agency telling them to stop. Once the agency receives the letter, they cannot contact you again, except to say that there will be no further contact or to simply provide you non-collection information about the account. Of course, if stopping collections abuse was accomplished simply by writing a "cease and desist" or C & D letter, we would have far fewer clients to help in the abusive collections environment. Sadly, many debt collectors simply view "the law" as an annoyance they can ignore, often fostered by the view that people who can't pay their bills, can't hire a lawyer to protect them either. Every day, often several times a day, we prove that theory wrong!
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and the Florida Consumer Collection Practices Act (FCCPA) prevents debt collectors from engaging in abusive practices to collect debts, including making threats, using abusive or profane language, and many other things, as referenced in our consumer rights page. If a collector treats you with disrespect, an attorney from the Tischhauser Law Group can help you build a case against abusive debt collectors.
To recover damages for a personal injury you need proof that you have been injured, physically or emotionally, by the accident. In addition, you need to show that someone else caused your injury through negligence, strict liability or some intentional misconduct. To assess these issues you need to review them with an experienced attorney.
All of the following elements must exist for an act to be considered negligent:
a. The defendant owed a duty to the plaintiff or the general public
b. The defendant breached that duty
c. The plaintiff suffered an injury
d. The injury was reasonably foreseeable or expected
e. There are damages as a result
A contingency fee is a fee that lawyers use in most personal injury cases. Instead of paying an hourly rate, you only pay the attorney if they win your case. The fee is usually a percentage of what you win for your damages or in some instances, like many consumer protection cases, fees that the wrongdoer must pay that are added on top of whatever damages you recover.