For most people, there is nothing worse than picking up the phone to find a debt collection agency representative on the other line. If, however, a debt collector does call, it is extremely important to handle the call the right way. In fact, there are many things that people should NEVER do when they get a call from a debt collector.
Avoiding the Call
To start off with, one of the worst things that a delinquent consumer can do when a debt collector calls is to just plain ignore the call. This is NOT going to make the debt go away and will only make matters worse. Plus, if debt collectors are ignored for long enough, debtors could find themselves in court facing legal action.
To avoid more serious consequences, consumers are advised to answer those collection calls and to deal with them maturely. They should assemble any information they have on the debt and consult this information as they speak with the debt collector to ensure the debt is accurate and to work out a realistic repayment plan.
Not Knowing Their Legal Rights
Another big problem comes when consumers are uninformed and unaware of their legal rights. For example, in many states, a debt can no longer be collected on after it is five to seven years old. If consumers don’t know this, they could end up paying on debts that they don’t actually owe, at least according to the law.
To avoid situations like this one, debtors should know the laws in their state and exercise their rights when possible and favorable to do so.
Not Asking for Debt Verification
Finally, when contacted by debt collectors, consumers should ALWAYS request written verification of the debt. It is within their rights to do so, and consumers want to ensure that the debt they are being asked to pay is actually their responsibility.
Once verification is received, the consumer will know whether or not the debt is valid and can then take the proper steps accordingly.
Obviously, a lot of errors can be made when speaking with a debt collector, but as long as consumers know their rights and what to do, everything should go just fine and may even lead to a successful resolution of the debt that will make both parties happy.