Finally you are on the right track. Joining that Debt Settlement program was the smart decision, not for your neighbor or coworker but for you. However, just because you have acquired professional assistance for your financial obstacles doesn’t mean you can just sit back and walk away leaving it all up to the pros. Unfortunately until the right moves have been made, your creditors will still make every attempt to collect from you the balances in full. Here are a few tasks you may need to do.
1. If you have phone messages on your voice-mail, simply give the name and number of who called to your debt relief representative and they will make contact with the collector.
2. When speaking directly with the creditor, tell the creditor politely that you are now being represented by (company/attorney name here), and provide the creditor with the appropriate phone number. If the creditor asks anything further, politely but firmly repeat “I am now being represented by ________________ in regards to this account. Their phone number is xxx-xxx-xxxx.” The creditor may try to ask if you are filing bankruptcy. If you are in a debt settlement program, you obviously are not planning to file bankruptcy, but that is none of your creditors business. Once the creditor knows you are being represented by an attorney, the creditor should quit communicating with you.
3. It is always a good idea that you keep a log of phone calls you receive from creditors and send that to your debt relief representative periodically. There are specific guidelines collections agencies are required to adhere to. One of which is the amount of phone calls within an allotted time period. If collectors violate regulations it is possible that your debt settlement company can obtain a much reduced settlement or have the debt forgiven all together depending on the severity of the offense.
4. A very tiny number of bill collectors will continue to harass you. IF that happens, let your representative know. The continuous phone calls may be grounds for a lawsuit against the creditor, and may help in settling your account down the road. Now debt collectors cannot legally call you at work unless the phone number you put on the credit card application happens to be your work number. However, once you establish with your creditor that they are in fact calling your place of employment they are at that point obligated to cease all phone calls to your work. Be sure to provide the attorney or debt settlement phone number to the creditor.
5. SOCIAL MEDIA: These days’ collections agencies are using all available tools to collect on balances owed. In the past I’ve had a few clients whose family inlaws were being harassed by a major credit card company. The harassment was so bad the particular family member was moved to tears. What perplexed the client most was she had not lived with this part of her family in over twenty years, and the phone number the collections group called was a new number. How could they have obtained this information? FACEBOOK. Be very careful with what you post for the whole world to see. Although this act of calling and harassing family and friends is unacceptable, it does happen. Just like with contacting your place of employment, once you establish with your creditor that they are in fact calling a third party who is not in any way connected with the debt itself, they are at that point obligated to cease all phone calls to friend or family. Be sure to provide the attorney or debt settlement phone number to the creditor.
Joining that Debt Settlement program was the smart decision for you. You didn’t acquire this debt over night and it will take some time and effort from you and your Debt Settlement Company to complete the task of elimination your outstanding secured debt. Be patient, be diligent and be involved.