Disclaimer: The information presented below serves merely as a background on some of the effective ways that you can legally deal with debt collectors, and shouldn’t be used as a substitute for legal advice. To find out more on what you can do under the law when faced with having to talk to a collecting agency concerning your personal or business debt, you would have to consult a lawyer who can help you.
When you’re strapped for cash for personal or business expenses and you have to buy something that you urgently need, you might find yourself swallowing your pride and borrowing money despite your initial reservations about incurring debt. But since the money that you borrowed isn’t yours, you would have to pay it back to your creditor in a timely manner.
You normally shouldn’t have to come into contact with anybody else if you were already paying the money that you owe your creditor on or before the due date as specified in the agreed debt contract.
However, in case several months had already passed and you still weren’t able to repay your debt, your creditor has no other choice but to pass it on to a third-party debt collection agency who would immediately remind you of the money that you have to pay back. If you find yourself having to speak to a debt collection agent, listed below are some effective ways that you can use to legally deal with them.
What Are Some of the Effective Ways for You to Legally Deal with Debt Collection?
Before proceeding, you should remind yourself that the legal ways for you to deal with debt collectors as mentioned below aren’t meant to serve as an escape route out of your outstanding debt. In the end, you would still have to pay back the money that you borrowed from your creditor so that you can be cleared of any debt that you’ve incurred. Without further ado, here are some of the effective ways for you to legally deal with debt collection:
1. Count five days after the agency in charge of collecting your debt has initially contacted you as they should send you a written notice.
Any verbal exchange between you and a third-party collection agency hired by your creditor about the debt that you incurred wouldn’t suffice. You would have to make sure that the following information regarding your debt has been set in writing and sent to you by way of a written notice within five days after the collection agency first reached out to you about it:
- The debt amount.
- Your creditor’s name.
- A statement wherein the debt collector will assume that you’ve in fact incurred the indicated amount of debt if you didn’t dispute it in writing within 30 days.
- Another statement wherein the debt collector may send to you a copy of verification of debt or judgment against you via certified mail in response to your previously sent dispute letter.
- Yet another statement wherein the debt collector is required to give the name and address of the creditor who you originally owe money from in response to your dispute letter.
2. If you believe that you didn’t borrow any money from an individual or a business despite a third-party agency claiming otherwise, dispute it in writing within 30 days.
With debt collection agencies compiling a list of hundreds or even thousands of debtors in their database, chances are high enough that someone else’s debt might have been attached to your name by mistake.
- The law allows you 30 days at most to write a letter stating that you don’t owe any money to the creditor who hired the third-party agency in charge of collecting your supposed debt.
- You would also have to make sure to send your written dispute letter via certified mail so that the debt collection agency wouldn’t falsely claim that they haven’t received it.
3. Record every phone call between you and your debt collector with the latter’s permission.
Aside from making sure that you receive a written notice via certified mail within five days from the agency in charge of collecting your debt, and if you’re of the belief that you didn’t incur any debt from anyone, send a written dispute letter also via certified mail within 30 days. Additionally, you would also want to record any phone calls between you and your debt collector.
- You should inform your debt collector though that you’ll record your conversation over the phone so that they wouldn’t be taken aback by it.
- All recorded calls between you and your debt collector can serve as evidence later on if ever you have to file a lawsuit against the latter for abusing or threatening you verbally.
As much as you might avoid incurring debt, there might come a time when you need to urgently buy something and the current amount of money that you have isn’t enough for you to do so. You might then find yourself borrowing some money with a promise on your end to pay it back promptly.
But if several months had already gone by without you repaying even a small portion of your debt, your creditor would have to turn it over to a collection agency. Good thing then that collection agencies are bound by the law to take your incurred debt as kindly as possible even if they have to remind you about it in a stern and urgent tone from time to time.
However, you might not be as lucky if the agency that your creditor has tasked to collect your debt is flagrantly violating the law so that it can force debtors to pay back the money that they’ve borrowed as soon as possible. Thus, you would want to read the above-listed ways that are effective when you have to legally deal with debt collection so that your rights as a debtor are protected.
Daniel Grate is a professional writer in the law industry. She currently writes pieces on various law topics for the common reader. In her spare time she spends quality time with her family and friends.