If a debt collector is hounding or seeking payment on a debt you owe, you should be aware of how to tackle this situation. Debt collectors can be annoying, predatory, and sometimes even illegal.
It’s crucial to know how to handle debt collectors so that you practice your rights and choose the best way to manage your debt.
Here is the list of tips you can use to tackle debt collectors better:
1. Don’t make payment on the first contact
Don’t pay even a single penny without understanding the terms. Take time to think through your options. When a debt collector calls you, don’t give any information that he can use later. Ask for information on the debt which you owe and tell them to call back later. Making a single payment is an acknowledgment of the debt and it has serious consequences.
2. Gather the facts
When the debt is sold by the original creditor to a third party, recordkeeping often falls by the wayside. Many sold debts have errors both in terms of amount and the person who owes it. If you are being contacted by the debt collector for a debt you don’t owe, ask them to send a validation within the 5 business days of the first contact. The letter should include the details about the debt, the name of the collection company, and how to challenge the debt.
Make a record of the debt, if it is yours, including the information on the original creditor and payments made in the past. Keep a proper record of communication and any payments made previously.
3. Know your rights and how to use them
As a consumer, you should know your rights because it protects your predatory collection tactics.
Communication: You can specify how and when a debt collector can contact you and whether they should cease communication altogether. Debt collectors are not allowed to use profane language or threaten the consumer to pay the debt.
Honesty: A debt collector cannot mislead about how much money you owe, name of the organization, legal repercussions such as arrest.
Challenging the debt: You have a complete right to dispute the debt. If you challenge the debt within the first 30 days of contact with the debt collector, the debt collector cannot ask or force you to make payment until the dispute is settled. After the 30 days, you can still challenge the debt, but the collector can ask you to make the payment while the dispute is being investigated.
Understand the protection laws made by your government. Contact a Debt Collection Netherlands company and ask them to help you make the payment or settle the debt.
Whether it’s sending a letter to a debt collector to cease contact or demanding the collector to provide additional information, you should know how to exercise your rights. If you are being asked to pay a debt you don’t owe, don’t be afraid to challenge it.