Tuesday, April 24, 2012

If the debt is yours, what to do next with the debt collection agency?

After determining the debt is yours, you may do one of a few things: ignore it or contact them.

I don't recommend ignoring them, for it could force a lawsuit, which is not a fun thing to go through.  In contacting them, you may either call them or mail them a letter.

Be persistent when working with collection agencies.  Typically, if you don't have the money to completely pay off a debt, you may settle for 20-40% of the total.  This would also have to be done as a lump sum, so if you're able to save for it, try this method to settle an account.

If you're not able to, take a deep breath . . . and hang up the phone.  They can't throw you in debtor's prison.  They may garnish your wages, but it takes a lot of effort on their part, and time.  They will not go away.  Even if you haven't heard from them in six months, they can still sue you.

Be persistent.  Know what the laws say, what they can and can't do.  Bottom line: don't ignore them.  Try to work a deal out.

**Please keep in mind, the advice given above is only my opinion, and your situation may be different so it would be adviseable to seek legal counsel**

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