Remaining calm will help with debt collector interactions

It is a widely purported myth that only reckless spenders end up in financial trouble. The truth is that millions of people in America find themselves in debt through no fault of their own. 

Debts are something that follow you around, and at some point, debt collectors may call. Debt collectors are individuals or companies that collect debts on behalf of creditors. While debt collectors are entitled to call you or even visit your residence, they must act within the confines of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA). 

If a debt collector calls, what should you do? 

Establish whether the debt is valid 

Whether debt collectors call in person or over the phone, it can be nerve-racking. You may be tempted to just agree with everything they say, which could amount to an acknowledgement that the debt is valid. The trouble is, the debt may not be valid and you may be accepting liability for something that you didn’t need to. 

For example, if the prior owner of your home owed the debt, then it is not up to you to pay. It is important not to acknowledge the validity of a debt or make a payment before first seeking legal guidance. 

If the debt is deemed to be invalid, then you can request in writing that the debt collector stops calling you or making visits to your home address. 

Don’t fight fire with fire 

It is not unheard of for debt collectors to use threatening and even abusive tactics. For example, they may say that you will be arrested if you do not pay. Debt collectors are not the police, and being in debt is not a crime. Thus, the chances of you being arrested are extremely slim. However, if you become angry then you may be giving debt collectors ammunition. 

If debt collectors have harassed you over the phone, note everything down so that it can be produced as evidence. The same can be said if they visit your home address. If they have threatened you with physical violence, then it is probably in your best interests to lock the door and alert the authorities. 

While it can be difficult, remaining calm will help during interactions with debt collectors. Seeking legal guidance promptly is also very important. 

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