Connecticut Attorney General's Office
Finance Department

Frequently Asked Questions Pertaining to Debt Collection
Can a debt collector call me up at anytime?

A "debt collector" or consumer collection agency may not call you at inconvenient times or places, such as before 8:00 a.m. or after 9:00 p.m., unless you agree you can be contacted at these times. If you inform the debt collector that you have an attorney, the collector must contact your attorney rather than you.

Can a debt collector call me at work.

Yes, unless the debt collector knows or has reason to believe that your employer does not approve of such contacts.

How can I stop a debt collector from continuing to contact me?

A debt collector may continue to contact you unless you have requested the collector to stop in writing. Once the collector receives your written letter, it can only contact you to notify you that there will be no further contact or that the creditor intends to take other action. If you owe a debt to a creditor, sending a letter to the debt collector will not erase your debt. The creditor may pursue action against you in court to collect upon the debt.

A debt collector threatened to ruin my reputation and used obscene language when speaking to me is that legal?

A debt collector may not harass or abuse you or any third parties it contacts in an effort to collect a debt. Debt collectors are prohibited from using obscene or foul language, repeatedly telephoning you to harass you, making threats to your person, reputation or property.

Debt collectors are also prohibited from using any false, deceptive or misleading statements in attempting to collect a debt. For example, they may not tell you that you will be arrested unless you pay your debt, or that they intend to take legal action such as filing a lawsuit to collect the debt when they do not intend to do so.

Can a debt collector keep contacting me even though I explained that I do not owe any money on this debt?

No, a debt collector must stop contacting you if within 30 days after you receive written notice of a debt, you send them a letter stating that you do not owe this money. The collector can continue to contact you if the collector sends you proof of the debt such as a copy of the bill for the amount owed, and you have not sent proof of payment.

How can I obtain more information about a debt collection or a consumer collection agency?

Consumer collection agencies must be licensed by the Department of Banking. If you would like to find out if a collection agency is licensed you make check the Department of Banking's website.

Frequently Asked Questions Pertaining to Automobile Insurance

How does an insurer determine the value of a motor vehicle that has been “totaled”?

The controlling Connecticut statute provides: “Whenever any damaged motor vehicle covered under an automobile insurance policy has been declared to be a constructive total loss by the insurer, the insurer shall, in calculating the value of such vehicle for purposes of determining the settlement amount to be paid to the claimant, use at least the average of the retail values given such vehicle by (1) the National Automobile Dealers Association used car guide and (2) one other automobile industry source which haws been approved for such use by the Insurance Commissioner. For purposes of this section, “constructive total loss” means the cost to repair or salvage damaged property, or the cost to both repair and salvage such property, equals or exceeds the total value of the property at the time of the loss.”

Can an appraiser steer an insured to particular body shop or repairer?

No. Such practices are prohibited under regulations established by the Insurance Department.