Whether you are behind on hefty medical bills or substantial credit card payments, that’s your business. But the last thing you should have to put up with is unjust pestering when you are trying your best to make ends meet.
Financial burdens have the word “burden” attached to them for a reason. Even if a debt collector has a legal right to reach out to you, there is a right and wrong way to go about it.
If you have overdue payments to a financial institution or other creditors, then they will usually attempt to reach out to you to collect bill payments you may have missed. However, creditor you sometimes hire a third-party debt collector to contact you on their behalf.
Debt collectors can call you by phone and send you mail notifications, fax messages and telegrams. Then, after making initial contact, they are supposed to send you written notice five days later. The letter should outline the amount of money you need to pay to clear the debt and the specific creditor you owe.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) legally prohibits debt collectors from harassing you to pay your bills. This includes violent threats, harsh words and constant, badgering calls.
It’s also unlawful for debt collectors to lie about who they represent or how much you owe. Claiming to be a company that doesn’t exist, or a law enforcement official are both out of the picture.
To address both fair and unfair calls, you can write a letter to the debt collection agency. But if debt collectors are still consistent with calls or try to get a hold of you outside of 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., then the agency is most likely violating the FDCPA.
Opening new lines of credit to combat unexpected expenses or not having a stable enough income to manage loan payments, isn’t something you have to deal with alone. When a debt collector calls cross the line from annoying to threatening, a bankruptcy attorney can help you pursue take legal action against the agency or help you consider filing for bankruptcy.