BOSTON (AP) – Attorney General Martha Coakley wants to close loopholes in debt collection rules that date back to the 1970s in Massachusetts.

Coakley is proposing that regulations prohibiting “abusive” debt collection attempts be modernized by adding cell phone calls and text messages to forms of communication covered by the rules.

She also wants to make debt buyers – companies that purchase debt and then try to collect it on their own – subject to all regulations.

Another change would require debt collectors to make a good faith effort to determine whether a debt is too old to be collected before contacting consumers.

Coakley says the amendments would help ensure that people are treated fairly when contacted about a debt.

A public hearing will be held on the proposed changes.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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