As if dealing with overwhelming debt burdens isn’t stressful enough, many people also facing persistent debt collection efforts from creditors. When you debt accounts enter the hands of a debt collector, they can become a nuisance and may even push to the point of harassment. Luckily, there are ways for you to fight back.
The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act was designed to protect consumers from bullying, harassment and unfair debt collection practices, but these guidelines often go violated by creditors. Repeated calls, threats, contacting employers or misrepresenting their intentions can all be commonplace among debt collectors. The Federal Trade Commission is working to crack down on such practices and prosecute violators, but they aren’t your only source of help.
If you are being pursued by creditors even in a fair manner you have two options, contact your creditor to negotiate a payment plan or file for bankruptcy. While many creditors may be willing to offer you payment assistance and relieve the debt collectors from their duties, not all are so kind and you could find that they simply won’t discuss your account once it has been turned over to debt collections. If this is the case, filing for bankruptcy can help you achieve an immediate halt to collection efforts.
Once you file your petition an automatic stay order is issued that will prevent creditors from contacting you or collecting on the debt. During your case creditors will be required to adhere to the plan outlined by the bankruptcy court. Contact a Tampa bankruptcy attorney to help you put a stop to debt collections while you work towards debt relief.
For more information about the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and to report violations, visit: http://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0149-debt-collection