Dena Standley | September 13, 2023
Edited by Hannah Locklear
Summary: Did you know Wyoming protects you from being harassed by debt collectors for a debt you owe? You can also take action against them by reporting them to various consumer protection institutions and filing a lawsuit against them. This article will explain these laws and the action to take after they violate your rights.
You’ve probably had enough of the annoying calls from debt collectors. Or maybe it's the endless emails or voicemails that you’re fed up with. Now, you are probably asking yourself how to stop them from contacting you. The good news is that Wyoming has laws that can protect you from debt collection harassment and other unfair practices.
Apart from the strict regulation on debt collection communications, Wyoming has other laws that protect consumers at various stages of the collection process. In this article, we’ll break down these laws in detail and explain steps to take against a debt collector who violates your rights.
Wyoming Statutes 33-11-101 through 33-11-116 are state-specific laws that protect consumers from unfair debt collection practices. These laws also protect clients who have hired debt collection agencies to perform collection services on their behalf. Here are some of the most important Wyoming debt collection laws to know about:
Under Debt collectors must give their clients a statement of all the money they've collected within 30 days of the end of the month it was collected. This statement must show when and how much was collected. If multiple accounts are against one debtor, the statement must show which account got the payment. Clients must be able to keep the statement, and it shouldn’t be part of a check to cash.
Upon request, Wyoming debt collectors must provide consumers with a detailed written record of their debts. This record will list each debt, who it's owed to, the amount, any extra charges, payment details, and remaining balance. Note that you cannot request this information too frequently—specifically no more often than you make payments.
Collectors can only sue or collect the actual owed amount plus any legal interest and court costs. If suing based on a legal document that allows attorney fees, those fees can be added, but only if a licensed attorney represents the collector. The attorney gets paid this fee, not the collector.
Wyoming debt collection laws clearly state that debt collection agencies that operate without a license will be penalized for participating collection activities, as outlined in WY Stat § 33-11-115. More specifically, any debt collector that operates without a valid collections in Wyoming is guilty of a misdemeanor and may be fined up to $750 or sent to jail for up to 6 months.
Wyoming still protects you even when a debt collector wins a garnishment order. The law limits how they conduct themselves and the amount they can take. WY Stat § 1-15-408 states that creditors can only take 25% of your disposable income for debt or an amount that surpasses thirty times the federal minimum wage ($7.25/hr). Exemptions to garnishment include:
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is a nationwide debt collection law that supports state laws. Wyoming borrows heavily from these laws, and courts use them to make rulings regarding debt collection. Under the FDCPA, Wyoming debt collectors cannot:
Note that slight differences can be found between the FDCPA and state laws, but FDCPA refers consumers back to the state laws for clarification. Here is a quote regarding this matter found in the Act section 816:
"This subchapter does not annul, alter, or affect, or exempt any person subject to the provisions of this subchapter from complying with the laws of any State with respect to debt collection practices, except to the extent that those laws are inconsistent with any provision of this subchapter, and then only to the extent of the inconsistency. For purposes of this section, a State law is not inconsistent with this subchapter if the protection such law affords any consumer is greater than the protection provided by this subchapter—FDCPA."
Below are some other debt collection laws outlined by the FDCPA.
According to 15 U.S. Code § 1692b, a debt collector is expected to carefully measure how they communicate with someone else regarding your debt. Even though the law allows them to call a debtor’s friend or relative to ask where they are, the law prohibits them from:
In addition to regulations listed above, the FDCPA states that debt collectors must cease communications after receiving a Debt Validation Letter, which formally demands more information about the debt in question. If the debt cannot be validated, you may be off the hook. Learn more about how a Debt Validation letter can prevent a lawsuit and how to write one in the following video.
Once you know your consumer rights, you have the upper hand when debt collectors contact you. Ideally, they will tone down their unprofessionalism and use the proper methods to collect the debt. The following are the steps to take when they violate your rights:
Another viable option is to settle the debt. When they realize you have evidence against them for consumer violation, they may be willing to accept a settlement offer. Use SoloSettle to increase your chances of resolving your debt at a lower rate.
Debt collectors and creditors have the right to take legal action if you refuse to communicate with them about your debt. However, that doesn’t mean that all debt lawsuits have merit. Luckily, SoloSuit was created with this in mind.
SoloSuit can help you respond to a debt lawsuit in Wyoming, stand up for your rights, and buy yourself time to work out a debt settlement plan. The surest way to get debt collectors off your back is by paying what you owe. And if you go about this wisely, you can usually settle your debt for less than you originally owed.
In a debt settlement, you offer your creditor a portion of the total amount due, usually at least 60% of the debt’s value. In exchange for a lump-sum payment, the creditor agrees to drop its legal claims against you and release you from the remaining balance.
If you decide to settle your obligation, you’ll want to ensure you get the terms of your agreement in writing and pay the creditor before your court date. If you’ve never tried debt settlement before, consider working with a professional organization that will guide you through the process.
To learn more about how to settle a debt in Wyoming, check out this video:
SoloSettle, powered by SoloSuit, is a tech-based approach to debt settlement. Our software helps you send and receive settlement offers until you reach an agreement with the collector. Once an agreement is reached, we’ll help you manage the settlement documentation and transfer your payment to the creditor or debt collector, helping you keep your financial information private and secure.
Read also: How to Settle a Debt in Wyoming
SoloSuit makes it easy to fight debt collectors.
You can use SoloSuit to respond to a debt lawsuit, to send letters to collectors, and even to settle a debt.
SoloSuit's Answer service is a step-by-step web-app that asks you all the necessary questions to complete your Answer. Upon completion, we'll have an attorney review your document and we'll file it for you.
Here's a list of guides for other states.
Being sued by a different debt collector? Were making guides on how to beat each one.
You can ask your questions on the SoloSuit forum and the community will help you out. Whether you need help now are are just look for support, we're here for you.
Is your credit card company suing you? Learn how you can beat each one.
Need more info on statutes of limitations? Read our 50-state guide.
Need help managing your finances? Check out these resources.
Out Debt Validation Letter is the best way to respond to a collection letter. Many debt collectors will simply give up after receiving it.
"Finding yourself on the wrong side of the law unexpectedly is kinda scary. I started researching on YouTube and found SoloSuit's channel. The videos were so helpful, easy to understand and encouraging. When I reached out to SoloSuit they were on it. Very professional, impeccably prompt. Thanks for the service!" - Heather