Dealing With a Debt Collector: 3 Things to Keep in Mind

Debt collectors have one job and one job only, to secure as much as money from you as possible. Many collectors go to great lengths, such as making harassing phone calls and using threatening language. Others are simply persistent while adhering to the laws. Dealing with a debt collector, even in the early stages, can be intimidating.

There are three important points to keep in mind when you find yourself in the collection process. First, don’t give in to threats. Second, get everything in writing. Third, do not give any collector access to a bank account.

1. Don’t Give into Threats

Collectors will attempt to hit you with verbal missiles that shake your emotions. This is their strategy. Don’t give in. It’s a fact that some debt collectors will use verbal threats over the phone. These may include threatening a lawsuit, threatening wage garnishment, or threatening to contact an employer.

These are all disallowed under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Collectors understand that people who are scared will make irrational decisions. Do not let the threats rattle you.

2. Get Everything in Writing

Next, it’s extremely important to get anything in writing, including the verification of the debt and any offer to settle. The verification of debt shows that the collector is legally authorized to collect on the debt. The primary creditor, such as a hospital or the credit card company, will provide this verification in writing.

In addition, an offer to settle is not valid unless it’s in writing. Collectors cannot be trusted to work in your best interest because it is not in theirs. You should not act on any oral agreement to settle.

3. Don’t Give a Debt Collector Access to Your Bank Account

Finally, never give a debt collector access to a bank account. You may be tempted to settle with a collector. The first thing they will ask is permission to withdraw from a checking account. This is not advisable. Instead, it’s much safer to pay with a certified check.

Even with this advice, we advise that you contact an attorney who can help you deal with any abusive debt collection process. You don’t want to be stuck having to deal with this on your own. Collectors are professionals so you should work with a professional to help your cause. We encourage you to contact us for more information on issues relating to debt collection.