Debt Collectors

With debt levels in Canada at record levels. Collection agencies across Canada are becoming increasing more aggressive about collecting past due accounts.  Finding more and more creative ways to seek out debtors and recover delinquent accounts.

Collection agencies are in the business of debt recovery.  These agencies are quite often not the owner of the debt but outsourced agents of the original creditor.  They are paid a percentage of the total amount collected, which explains the levels that they will go to recover the accounts receivables.

Collectors spend a significant amount of time attempting to locate debtors and they will often call a debtor’s family members, friends, workplace, and even former landlords, in order to obtain a debtor’s current contact information. The internet and social media has increased personal visibility and these are now tools used by collection agencies.  It is, however, illegal for collection agencies to disclose the existence of a debt to anyone other than the debtor.   This means that collections agencies can’t discuss your financial situation with your roommate, parents, spouse, children, friends, co-workers, neighbors, or anyone else.

Know your Rights and the Law

In British Columbia there are laws and rules debt collectors must follow.
Top 10 tips to dealing with Debt Collectors;
1. Debt Collectors can not call you more than 3 times in a 7 day period without your consent.
2. Collection calls restricted and not  allowed aftter 9 pm or before 7 am pst
3. Collection calls allowed on Sunday but restricted from 1 pm to 5 pm
4. Co-signers can be contacted
5. You can stop collection calls by sending a registered letter to the collection, requesting all communication be done in writing.
6. It is against the law for collection agencies to threaten to sue if there is no intention or authority.  Only the original creditor can sue for payment and rarely does this happen.
7. BC residents can file complaints with  Consumer Protection BC
8. Government of Canada, also provides guidance on dealing with debt collectors.
9. Collection Agencies must have a license to operate in BC, Check here if your collection agency is licensed.
10. If you negotiate a settlement directly with a collection agency, get the settlement in writing, don’t send cash and get a receipt of final payment and account closing.

Should you have more multiple debt collectors contacting you regarding past due or delinquent accounts, we can help you.  Talk to our team to review your options for debt reduction and ending collection calls.

© Copyright 2015, Sheila Smelt & Associates Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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