Calls from debt collectors are usually not fun even in best case scenarios. It can be a headache knowing you have some outstanding debt which cannot be paid and you have nowhere to go since the debt collectors will only offer bare minimum as far as options are concerned. Most of these debt collectors can use abusive language, scare tactics or threats to frighten you to pay them. This breeds unnecessary tension and makes the situation dire. You should know the following things when dealing with debt collectors.
Negotiate settlement on your terms
You should go over your expenses and income and figure out what is affordable and only pay an amount that is realistic. Payment plans are never necessary, and when your debt reaches the third party collectors, then it is at the last end before getting written off. You are likely to pay more if you agree to payment plans over time. Avoid payment plans as much as possible, and in case you agree to one, ensure you understand fully the total amount you end up paying.
Zombie debts are still there
This is an old debt which will not die. Collection accounts are normally resold every time, so it is common for you get a call about debts that are no longer owed or are outside the statutes of limitations. The former is illegal however the latter may not be. Do not pay the debt right away. Ensure the collector validates the debt before acknowledging its existence. You can restart the clock of your old debts unknowingly by paying part of the debt or agreeing the debt is yours on the phone. Due diligence is the best way of defending yourself from zombie debts.
Beware of scammers
Ensure the debt collector identifies themselves with the company, name, street address, license number and telephone numbers. You should know that verification is your right by law. This helps you to avoid debt collection scams of which most people fall prey.
Do not be a victim of paying anything
Once of your any amount especially giving the payment over the phone, then you are restarting the clock since debts get bumped up on your credit report depending on the more or least you pay. Always ask a debt collector to send a document in writing. These collectors have to investigate the debt as long as you have filed a written dispute within a month of the initial contact. And the debt collectors should cease contact till they verify in writing that you owe them the stated amount.
Nobody likes to have debt, but you should not be a prisoner to debt collectors. You have rights and exercising them will help you take control of such situations.…