How to Deal With Debt Collectors and Avoid a Stressful Day

Dealing with non stop debt collection calls, letters, and even legal notices can add a huge amount of stress to your life. Collectors are typically paid on a commission basis, so their efforts to collect the debt lead them to partake in ruthless tactics. With more information being publicly available, there's a good chance they've already checked you out prior to attempting to make contact. Most collection agencies arm their collectors with your personal information that was provided at the time the debt was incurred. Updates are also made by collectors and added to the database they keep your information in. The good news is that there's actions you can take to shield yourself from falling into their trap. Litigation Boss Law is happy to provide these tips to reduce and potentially eliminate the harassment you experience with debt collectors.
Avoiding the calls of a debt collector is the best practice. Collectors are trained on and often use tactics to make you feel pressured into resolving the debt on their terms. If the debt has been sent to a collection agency, chances are that they've paid significantly less for the debt than what you owe. The remainder that they collect above that amount is the profit they earn. If you must or prefer to deal with them over the phone be certain that the debt is valid. Ask them to validate the debt and send you a letter with proof. They're legally required to comply with your request. If they're unable to validate the debt, you'll be able to dispute it with the credit bureaus and have it removed from your credit report.

Building upon the last tip, ask for everything to be put in writing. This gives you an opportunity to research both the debt and the collection agency. Scams have surfaced in recent years with debt collectors attempting to collect on nonexistent debts. Seniors have been targeted at a particularly high rate with this scam. If the debt collector claims to be an attorney, ask them to send you proof of their credentials or, at minimum, where their credentials can be found online. If it's discovered that they've been deceitful, contact an attorney at once and report the matter to your state attorney general's office. Misrepresentation can lead to hefty penalties and damages that you may be able to collect.
If the debt collector is threatening you with a lawsuit, ask for proof of their intent to sue and the law firm that will be handling the matter. Typically, unless the amount is large enough to pursue in court, they're often bluffing. They typically must hire local counsel to handle the matter. This can be costlier to the collection agency than simply taking a loss. If they do file a lawsuit, it's advisable to either hire your own attorney to handle the matter or resolve the matter with the law firm that's filing the suit against you. Judgments are public record and will appear on your credit report. Make every effort possible to keep the matter from escalating to this level.

If you're wishing to not receive phone calls from the debt collectors, send them a cease and desist letter. Collectors are only able to make one call after receiving the letter to inform you of their intentions. This remedy will help reduce the stress of receiving the phone calls; however, they're still legally allowed to pursue the matter through all other methods of communication and legal action. You're also allowed to record their phone calls without permission in many states. This is a good tactic if you believe that the collector is being abusive in their efforts. In the states where you do require permission to record, simply state that you're recording the call. If they continue speaking, they've given you permission to record the call. Most of them will simply hang up at this point.

Whatever you do, avoid giving debt collectors any personally identifying information. As their mandatory disclosure states, they're going to use that information to collect the debt. This includes them contacting your employer, friends, family, and whomever else they can. Collectors have a variety of methods to gain your personal information, including social media. It's best to keep a low profile online if this is a concern.

If circumstances warrant, another option is to file for bankruptcy. This should be a very well thought out decision as it can have major credit implications that are long lasting. If you've filed for bankruptcy, you'll need to get in touch with the debt collection agency and notify them. If they reach you first, it's a good idea to have the petition number and your attorney's contact information handy. They'll be requesting this information to verify that the petition has been filed. They're not legally allowed to continue collection activity after the action has been filed. If they persist, keep records of their attempts and provide this information to your attorney.

WikiHow provides excellent information on how to handle debt collectors. Educating yourself on the legal aspect of debt collection can help you plan to deal with the matter. Bear in mind that the collection agencies have rights as well. If the debt is legitimate, you're still obligated to repay it. Once you've been able to handle the matter effectively, developing a strategy to stay on top of your obligations is always the best remedy. There are many companies that can help you repair your credit. This reduces the financial burden of having to pay excessive amounts of interest and unfavorable repayment terms. There are also many budgeting resources that can be found online and through mobile apps.

Avoiding credit whenever possible is also another strategy that many people have found to be effective. For some people this means having to find a higher paying job or an additional source of income. Living within your means is always prudent and will help you exercise financial discipline. Getting out of debt can prove to be a stressful but worthwhile effort that can benefit you for the long haul.


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