The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) is a federal law designed to protect consumers in the field of debt collection. One of its provisions deals with lawsuits and the age of debt.

The FDCPA prohibits a debt collector from suing you over ‘stale’ debt. In the State of Michigan, a collector cannot sue you once the statute of limitations has passed, which is 6 years from the date of last payment to the creditor. This is called a time-barred collection lawsuit and it is illegal.

A consumer in Pennsylvania just won her case against debt collector Stock & Grimes, based on her knowledge of this issue. The consumer was alleged to owe a debt on a Discover Bank credit card, which she defaulted on. Discover Bank then hired Stock & Grimes, a collection law firm in Pennsylvania, to collect the debt.

Stock & Grimes filed a lawsuit 3 years after the consumer defaulted based on Pennsylvania’s 4 year statute of limitations. But the consumer’s defense stated that the case should be based on Delaware’s 3 year statute of limitations because that is where Discover Bank is located, and where they experienced the harm of the default. She sued Stock & Grimes in federal court claiming the collection lawsuit was time-barred and a violation of the FDCPA. And she won a major triumph against the debt collectors.

The consumer won the case because the FDCPA is designed to protect consumers, who might not know about the statute of limitations on stale debt and that they can defend themselves against lawsuits based on this information. The federal court agreed with the consumer that Delaware’s 3 year statute of limitations applied to this case and that Stock and Grimes had violated the FDCPA by filing the lawsuit against the consumer. By knowing her rights, the consumer not only got the collection lawsuit against her dismissed, she will be awarded money damages from the debt collectors.

We, at Michigan Consumer Credit Lawyers, want you should know that the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act allows consumers to hire lawyers who can sue debt collectors for violating the FDCPA. These lawsuits cost you nothing. The attorneys’ fees and costs are shifted, by law, to the Defendant to pay. The consumer walks away with a measure of justice and a check from the debt collector.

If you have been victimized by a debt collector or have items on your credit report that are incorrect, call or email Attorney Gary Nitzkin for a free consultation at (888) 293-2882. For more information about your rights as a consumer, visit our website at, which is filled with informative videos and advice to help consumers. Michigan Consumer Credit Lawyers is here for you.