Authored by Lori Godin in Credit Card
Published on 12-08-2008
Chances are, if you have a credit card that has been close to the limit, over the limit or that has had payments defaulted upon – debt collection agencies have been in touch with you.
There is one important thing to remember about debt collection agencies. The majority of the time, agencies contacts the card holder to instruct them how much money is owed, to whom the money is owed and how the money can be repaid. Many customers become intimidated at the thought of contact from a debt collection agency – therefore, it is important to know how these types of agencies work and the limits and legislations that these companies must work with.
There are many ways that a debt collection agency might choose to contact the person who is in debt, these ways include: through letters in the mail, through electronic secured mail, through the use of telephone calls to the residence and the place of employment and even in person. Although the debt collection agencies may contact you at your place of employment, they are not allowed to threaten lawsuits or continue to call the place of employment when asked to stop because of intrusion with the work being completed. Many debt collection agencies don’t realise that they are not allowed to continue calling, when the employer discourages the practice.
Although you are in debt, it is important to be aware of your rights. The debt collection agent is not allowed to call during times that are deemed inconvenient. These times include between the hours of 9:00 pm and 8:00 am. If a debt collector calls the home during these hours, it is the right of the debtor to ask the agent to call back at a more appropriate hour.
Many customers are unaware of the fact that debt collection agencies must stop contact if asked in writing by the debtor. Although contact may be stopped, the debt collection agent can be referred to a lawyer to solve the problem of the amount owing. This must be completed in writing, and after it has been submitted, the debt collection agent is only able to contact the individual one more time to ensure the client that they will no longer be contacted, or to arrange additional plans.
Are debt collectors allowed to divulge information to other members of the household, family or work contacts? No, when the debt collector is trying to find an individual, they are by no means allowed to divulge information regarding the debt to anyone but the debtor, unless it has been specified in writing.
Using these tips, there are no longer reasons to be intimidated by debt collectors. They are merely people doing their job, as you are yours. With legislation and proper knowledge of your rights – you can be on your way to eliminating those phone calls from debt collectors and becoming debt free.