The phone rings again, you don’t answer. Why? Because you recognize the phone number on the caller ID and know it’s the same debt collector who’s been trying to get in touch with you for weeks – the same one you hung up on the first time they called. While you may think dodging or ignoring their calls is the way to end debt collection calls, in reality, that is not the case.
Debt collectors will continue to try to contact you to get the money you owe. Many companies will usually try to work with customers who are overdue on their payments. When they don’t get the result they want, they go to a debt collector.
Usually, by the time a debt collector is involved, a bill is long overdue. Debt collectors are a third-party company that works on behalf of the creditor you owe. It is their job to recoup the money you have not paid. If you constantly ignore them, they can ultimately sue you which will be far worse than facing your debt.
If you’re getting endless debt collection calls, here are a few things you can do to deal with them effectively:
1. Don’t answer the call blindly.
Chances are if you’re getting calls from a debt collector, you know their number by heart. Instead of continuing to dodge calls, have a plan in place. Answer the call and find out if the debt is truly yours. Don’t give out any personal information about your income, bills, or any other financial information.
2. Ask for the information in writing.
If they haven’t already, ask them to send you the information in the mail about your debt. This way you have it in writing. Check their facts because often times they may not be accurate. When debt gets sold between companies, valuable information can get lost in the shuffle. While you may certainly owe money, the amount they have recorded may not be right.
3. Know your rights.
Just because you may owe money, doesn’t mean you don’t have rights. The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act has several provisions in place to protect consumers. Under the FDCPA, you can decide how debt collectors contact you. If you don’t want any more calls, you can ask they contact you by email or regular mail. Under the FDCPA, debt collectors must also provide proof that you owe money, are prohibited from calling before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m., and they cannot call you at work if you tell them it could put your job at risk.
4. Don’t make a payment in “good faith”.
Many people make the mistake of authorizing a small payment to get debt collectors off their backs. While they think this will help, it won’t because any payment restarts the statute of limitations that a debt collector can sue you for a debt. Instead, ask them to send payment information in the mail so you can review it and then decide what course of action to take.
5. Don’t lose your temper.
While you may be annoyed by the call, don’t yell or use vulgarity. Many times these calls are recorded and if you are seen as the aggressor, it won’t work in your favor. Talk in a calm voice while expressing your concerns. If a debt collector begins to harass you, ask them calmly to stop.
6. Don’t make promises you can’t keep.
Many people will promise to make a payment just to end debt collection calls, knowing full well that they can’t make good on it. This is only going to prolong the number of calls. Resist the urge to say anything about paying off the debt.
7. Get help from a credit counselor.
Ultimately, a credit counselor is your best bet to end debt collection calls effectively. A credit counselor can advise you as to whether debt consolidation or debt settlement is best in your situation. Either one can put you back on a positive financial track.
Christian Debt Counselors offers both options. When you meet with a counselor, they will first assess your situation and find out the exact amount of money you owe and to whom. From there they can advise whether your situation will benefit most from debt consolidation or debt settlement. All credit counseling is done with a Christian perspective.
Debt that includes credit cards, personal loans, collections accounts, medical bills, and other unsecured debt are all eligible for either debt consolidation or debt settlement. Mortgage payments, car loans, IRS tax debt, student loans, and payday loans all do not qualify for either program.
If you’re ready to end debt collection calls for good and get your financial situation in order, call Christian Debt Counselors today to speak with a credit counselor.