If you’ve fallen behind on your bill payments, you should know that you have legal rights preventing creditors from harassing you. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is a federal law which basically requires debt collectors to treat you with certain basic fairness. The act applies to all personal household debt, such as car loans, medical bills and credit card bills. While a debt collector is allowed to contact you in a variety of ways, including by telephone, fax, and mail or in person, the debt collector cannot harass or abuse you. For example, they can’t call you before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m., and they can’t call you at work if you’ve told them you’re not allowed to get calls there. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act also prohibits debt collectors from threatening you with violence or with false legal claims such as threatening to sue you if they don’t intend to or claiming you’ve committed a crime. If you’ve been harassed by the constant calls or even abusive tactics of a debt collector, contact an attorney to find out how you can best protect your legal rights.