Wednesday, October 22, 2014

How to Deal With Rude Creditors



                                                           

Are you tired of creditors calling your house day and night? Are you tired of creditors being rude and asking for a payment every hour on the hour? You can stop it and answer your phone in peace.

A creditor is a company or person that extends "credit" by allowing a consumer to borrow money based on an agreement between the two parties that the money will be paid back at a later time. Creditors provide you with a form (agreement) to fill out that gets approved allowing you to use their credit based on the guidelines of the signed agreement.

If you make just one late payment (usually 30 days or more late), all creditors have a Collection Department that quickly calls to remind you to send a payment (even if the payment is one day past the due date). The first few calls the creditors seem really nice and ask when you will be able to send a payment. Then they quickly turn into the Attila the Hut and start being rude and use all kinds of tactics to get you to make a payment. This is unethical and is illegal according to the Fair Credit and Reporting Act (FCRA) and Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) which can be obtained by calling the Federal Trade Commission or going to their website at http://www.ftc.gov. The FCRA was instituted in 1996 to ensure the accuracy and fairness of credit reporting for consumers. The FDCPA was instituted in 1996 to stop abusive behavior by creditors. 

A creditor cannot call you before 8:00 am or after 9:00 pm. Creditors cannot use threats, profanity make false statements, use unfair practices, or make repeated calls to your home to collect a debt. However, they can call you on the weekends or contact your friends or relatives to get your contact information. Here are x ways to stop rude creditors from calling your home.

1.      If a creditor contacts you, as a consumer, legally you have the right to ask them to stop calling you by writing a letter indicating that the creditor should not contact you any further by phone to collect on the debt owed especially if they are harassing you.
2.      Ask for verification of the debt in writing either a letter from the original creditor or detailed monthly statement. This will prove if the company is legitimate and if the debt belongs to you.
3.      Record the name of the person calling you, the time they called and what they said.  If necessary keep a log of each time a creditor calls you regarding a debt.
4.      Don’t let fear cause you to make a bad decision. Don’t agree to a payment plan you cannot afford.
5.      If a creditor is contacting you regarding a debt for a spouse or deceased family member contact a lawyer to learn about your rights. You are not responsible for the debt unless you had a joint account with the person.
6.      If you feel a creditor has violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act you may file a complaint against them by calling the Federal Trade Commission at 1-877-FTC-HELP or going to http://www.ftc.gov to fill out an online complaint, or contact the CFPB, www.cfpb.gov. Include your call log in your complaint.
7.    In the future, if you ever fall behind on your payments and to prevent creditors from harassing you, notify your creditor immediately that you are having financial problems and try to setup a payment plan with them to prevent bad marks on your credit report and harassing calls.

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