Debt collectors are in the business of making money. These agencies may use quite unruly and even illegal strategies to get payments from debtors. Mistreatment from a debt collector should be taken very seriously. A debtor may be entitled to financial compensation for such harassment, so it is important that you meet with a legal professional as soon as possible.
The Motivation Behind Debt Collection Harassment
Debt collectors are typically motivated by the force to make money. Such an agency is unlikely to be kind to debtors who are way behind on paying off their debts. An attorney can provide insight into how a debt collector may utilize unethical, threatening, hostile, and even profane methods to lure a debtor into paying. A debtor may initially be startled to receive a call or letter of such an aggressive tone, from what is supposed to be a professional collection company. There are many ways in which a debt collector may be violating debtor rights, including but not limited to the following:
- Pressuring the debtor to pay more money than what is due
- Denying requests by the debtor to show proof that an amount is due
- Threatening the debtor that an arrest will be made if payments continue to be late
- Making more calls per day/week/month than is permitted by law
- Intentionally scheduling calls when it is likely to be most inconvenient for the debtor (before 8:00am and after 9:00pm)
- Calling the debtor’s place of work
- Making other empty threats that action will be taken against the debtor
- Contacting friends and family and sharing private information about the debtor
What You Can Do to Take Action
As a debtor, you do have rights when it comes to how a debt collector can seek payment from you. Just because you owe money to a creditor does not mean you are revoked of your rights. In addition to meeting with an attorney, here are some ways you can take action in getting the harassment to stop:
- Contact both the original creditor and the debt collector through phone call and written letter, that you request the harassment to stop. Keep a copy for your own records too, just in case you decide to take legal action and proof is needed.
- Request that your debts be verified, in order to prove that you actually owe what the debt collector is demanding from you.
- Start creating written records of every time the debt collector contacts you (note down phone numbers, do not delete voicemails and keep letters sent via mail).
- Contact the debt collector and request that you are not contacted at your place of employment, as your employer does not permit such calls to be made.
If you feel your rights have been violated and wish to consult with an attorney to discuss how to proceed, contact a debt collection attorney, like the lawyers at Johnston & Martineau PLLP. for more information about your case.