What to do when you receive your first call from a debt collector

A debt collector can call a borrower regarding matters involving their debt. However, some debt collectors use this chance to engage in unfair practices. For this reason, it’s crucial to be informed.

Here is what to do when you receive your first call:

Get the debt collector’s information

The first thing to do is confirm if the debt collector is legitimate. Thus, get the person’s name, the agency they work for and the company’s address. You may not need to ask about the first two aspects, as the agent will introduce themselves. But if they don’t, you should ask.

Get information about your debt 

Besides finding out who you are talking to, you need information about the debt they want to collect. Ask about the creditor’s name, the amount owed and how you can confirm if the debt is yours/dispute it. The debt collector should provide you with this information in-depth before you can agree to pay the debt or negotiate. 

If the debt is valid, then it may be possible to arrange a repayment plan with the collector. If the debt is not in your name or you do not recognize it, then it could be invalid. In Minnesota, creditors and debt collectors are time-barred from pursuing debts that are more than six years old. 

Learn about your rights

If the debt is valid, you need to know your rights from the get-go. When can the debt collector call you? How often can they call you? Can you tell them to stop contacting you? and so on.   

When you know your rights, you can quickly identify an unfair practice.

If you believe you have experienced abusive debt collection, get legal help to put it to a stop. 

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