CALL NOW!
FREE PHONE/VIRTUAL CONSULTATION

Tips for Handling Creditor Harassment

Tips For Handling Creditor Harassment Tampa, St Petersburg, And Pasco Florida.Creditor Harassment and Bankruptcy

Dealing with a significant amount of debt is difficult enough, but when creditors began hounding you for payment the situation can feel as if it has spiraled out of control.

Despite the limits placed on debt collectors by law, there are still plenty who harass debtors. In some cases, the actions creditors are taking are perfectly legal, but can still feel intimidating and put you in a number of uncomfortable situations.

The good news is you can do something about creditor harassment. If creditors are being abusive with their actions it’s possible to report them and bring an end to the problem. And if they are simply doing their job there are still tools available to help you bring an end to this difficult time.

What are some of the best things you can do if you are dealing with creditor harassment?

Understand Your Rights as a Debtor

It’s true, you might have made mistakes that led to the debt situation you’re in now, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have rights. You don’t need to accept debt collector bullying and harassment.

Debtor’s rights protect you from certain actions some debt collectors take.

According to the Unfair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), debt collectors and creditors are barred from:

  • Contact a debtor repeatedly
  • Contact a debtor at unreasonable hours
  • Contact a debtor’s employer if they’ve been told not to
  • Failing to identify themselves as a debt collector or creditor
  • Contact a debtor’s friends, family, or neighbors without permission
  • Utilize deceptive tactics
  • Make threats related to child custody, arrest, or loss of welfare benefits
  • Make threats of repossession when not authorized by the law
  • Use derogatory, obscene, or insulting words
  • Contact a debtor after they’ve been told not to and to contact a lawyer representing the debtor instead

There are specific limits as to what a debt collector can do.

For instance, they are not permitted to contact a debtor before 8 am or after 9 pm without permission. It’s important that, as the debtor, you make it clear you know the boundaries of debt collection and explain what they can and cannot do. If you don’t want calls at work, tell the collector to never contact you at work. You can also tell them not to contact friends or family.

You even have the power to tell a debt collector to never call you again. This doesn’t mean you’re off the hook regarding the debt, but it does mean you don’t need to deal with phone calls.

Ask for Proof of the Debt

Anyone who is contacted by a debt collector has a right to ask for proof of that debt. It’s important you not pay a debt until you receive proof of the debt and verify it is accurate.

Most people are surprised to learn how often debt is applied to a person inaccurately. Even a debt that was once yours might no longer be accurate or something you legally need to pay.

A debt collector must show documentation of a debt to be legally entitled to payment. If they are unable to produce this proof you cannot be held liable for the debt.

To learn more about creditors providing proof of debt and why it’s an important right for consumers, check out this information from The Balance.

Negotiate a Repayment Arrangement

There are instances in which a creditor will work with you on repayment on a debt. For instance, a creditor might be demanding a lump sum payment but would be willing to accept a few smaller payments over the course of a few weeks or months if you ask. They might even be willing to accept a portion of the total debt if you pay them within a certain period of time.

Keep in mind, if you pay only a portion of a debt owed it will have tax ramifications.

It’s also important to never give a debt collector direct access to your checking or savings account. If you arrangement a payment plan, make sure you are responsible for making that payment manually by the due date, as opposed to arranging an automatic payment or direct withdraw arrangement.

Contact an Attorney

Many times the best option for dealing with creditor harassment is to contact an attorney. An attorney can help negotiate payment arrangement with a debt collector or make it easier to navigate a debt collection lawsuit. And if you choose tofile for bankruptcy to deal with your debts, an attorney can help you with that process.

To discuss your situation or to schedule a consultation, contact the Law Office of Robert M. Geller at (813) 254-5696.

Archive

Video Testimonials

Tampa Bankruptcy Law Blog

What’s the Difference Between Chapter 13 and Chapter 7?

When people file for bankruptcy, they must choose between Chapter 13 and Chapter 7. Working with a Chapter 7 or...
Read More

10 Signs You Should File for Bankruptcy

When it comes to your finances, there may come a time when you feel like bankruptcy is the only way...
Read More

What Do You Need to Know Before Filing for Bankruptcy? A Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Attorney in Florida Can Help You During this Time

What happens during the time leading up to filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy? A Chapter 7 bankruptcy attorney in Florida...
Read More

What Does It Mean to Declare Bankruptcy?

What does it mean to "declare" bankruptcy? Your bankruptcy law attorney will help you through the process. Declaring bankruptcy is...
Read More

Student Loan Forbearance Ends April 30th. Here’s What You Need to Know

The federal government extended forbearance of repayment of student loans during the COVID-19 crisis. This forbearance was due to end...
Read More

Is Better Money Management on Your List of Resolutions for 2022?

If you’re like most Americans, improving your financial situation is on your list of New Year’s resolutions for 2022. Whether...
Read More

3 Reasons to Send Your Bankruptcy Attorney in Tampa Florida a Christmas Card

Have you begun making your Christmas card list yet? Did you include your bankruptcy attorney in Tampa, Florida? It seems...
Read More

What Was the Biggest Money Management and Bankruptcy News of 2021?

Like most years, bankruptcy was a topic that arose in the news many times throughout 2021. Topics related to money...
Read More

3 Best Bankruptcy Tips of 2021

Learning how to manage your money is an ongoing process. Even the smartest money minds out there can always learn...
Read More

How to Prevent Bankruptcy from Ruining Your Holiday Season: Why a Spending Spree Before Bankruptcy Could Hurt You in the New Year

Should you go on a spending spree before bankruptcy to celebrate the holiday season? The answer might surprise you. The...
Read More

Bankruptcy

For The Next 5 Days GET A FREE BOOK About Bankruptcy

Learn More

Infographics

We are A Debt Relief Agency.
We help people file for bankruptcy under the Bankruptcy Code

Pay Online Bankruptcy Courses Newsletter Subscription

NACBA Logo avvo1 avvo2 avvo3 LEA BBB Logo

Call For A Free Initial Consultation

813.254.5696

Tampa Office

Law Offices of Robert M. Geller, P.A.
807 West Azeele Street
Tampa, FL 33606
T: (813) 254-5696
T: (800) 853-7549
F: (813) 253-3405

Map And Directions

St. Petersburg Office

Law Offices of Robert M. Geller, P.A.
125 5th Street South
(Wells Fargo Financial Center)
2nd Floor, Suite G
St. Petersburg, FL 33701
T: (727) 532-3939

Map And Directions

Pasco Office

23526 State Road 54
Lutz, FL 33559
T: (813) 336-2320

Map And Directions