Top 7 Ways to Fight the Debt Collector
Whether you are the victim of bad luck or practiced poor judgement in your financial matters, there’s nothing worse then when the debt collector comes a-calling. And a-calling. And a-calling. But there are things you can do to take some of the sting out of the process. Here are the top 7 ways to fight the debt collector.
7. The RIGHT Approach
The first thing you’ll need to do is find out exactly what your rights are with regards to the matter. Do your homework. Debt collectors can play hardball and you need to know when they’ve crossed the line. You are not powerless in these situations and knowledge is the best weapon you have.
6. Keep Your Enemies Closer
It’s easy to personify debt collectors faceless monsters who only wish you ill. Especially if the calls keep coming and you’ve got empty pockets. But the thing to remember is that collection agencies don’t get paid until you’ve paid their client. If you ignore their calls, they might turn to scare tactics, but if you deal with them directly and fairly, in most cases they will work with you as it serves the ends of both parties. So don’t be afraid of the monster at the door. Work with them on a payment plan and stick to it.
5. The Bullying Stops Here
Of course, there are unscrupulous debt collectors out there who are only interested in browbeating you to pay the full amount owed quickly so they can take their cut. These operations prefer a volume business where they’ve scared everybody into paying. Well, there are harassment laws and limits to how far a company can go.
4. The Pen Is Mightier Than The Phone
Once first contact has been made, send them a registered letter asking them to stop contacting you. It won’t erase the debt but it will stop the calls as this is a document they are obliged to honor. If they don’t, then it becomes actionable on your part.
Anyone who thinks the law is something easy to understand hasn’t had much dealing with the legal system. In the case of debt collection, you might want to bring a lawyer in on your side. Not only will he/she have a better grasp of the shades of gray in the legal system, but the agency will now have to deal directly with them, not you, thereby reducing your stress level.
2. Facts of Strife
As soon as you put the phone down, start digging into the matter. Make sure the debt is something you actually owe. Get the facts. With identity theft on the rise and computer glitches you may be mistakenly on the hook and be in the throes of someone else’s headaches.
1. Captain Your Own Ship
Want to handle your debts and put an end to collection calls? It’s easy: pay your debt. Be responsible. If you have determined that you do indeed owe the debt, then your goal should be to pay as best you can, however you can. Being responsible is what adulthood is all about. You are in charge of you.
This is a guest post from Andrew Salmon from Individual Voluntary Arrangement.