Every day, bankruptcy attorney Raphael Gil III of The Gil Law Firm works with people that have experienced some type of creditor harassment. He knows that people face these types of situations because of job loss, medical emergencies, or family matters that are out of their control. When this is your reality, it’s important to know that help is available and you don’t have endure countless hours of creditor harassment.
When facing creditor harassment:
- Tell them your rights: Debt collectors cannot call you at work if your employer does not allow it and may only call you between the hours of 8:00am – 9:00pm. Also, if you have filed for bankruptcy, it is illegal for creditors to contact you without special permission of the court.
- Tell them not to call you in writing: If you ask collections personnel not to call you at your place of work, they must oblige. Tell them not to contact your relatives as well, and they must follow suit. If you do owe them money, offer to work out a payment plan or reach a settlement in writing. Keep copies of your communications and send them by registered mail so you have proof of delivery.
- Address disputes: If you dispute amounts owed, include that in your letter. Creditors must then prove that you owe these amounts and cannot call you until they do so. You may also want to write credit reporting agencies to say the amounts are in dispute and the amounts have not yet been proven by the creditor. Again, keep copies of your communications.
- Watch phone manners: Creditors are not allowed to lie, misrepresent themselves, swear, or threaten you with criminal prosecution. Likewise, be cordial in your own phone manners and if you’re facing a situation where you cannot pay your bills, tell them why without going into too much detail. They might offer you flexible payments on account of a job loss or other circumstances.
- Refer them to your lawyer: If you have multiple debts and are facing further financial stresses such as foreclosure, speak to a bankruptcy attorney that can discuss options like chapter 13 bankruptcy or chapter 7 bankruptcy. Once you have given your lawyer’s details, creditors are not allowed to contact you further.
When you’re facing creditor harassment and need help, call The Gil Law Firm at (334) 673-0100 and visit them online for more details.