5 Things Debt Collectors Won’t Tell You!
1. Debt collectors may create “urgency”. Sometimes collectors will make a “deal” to settle your debt and they create a “fake” deadline as to how long the offer will last. This “urgency” tactic creates a false time restraint on the debtor. Often times, there is no such “deadline”. Debt collectors may also threaten to inform credit agencies regarding your non-payment and lower your credit score. The truth is that the credit agencies already know if you are not paying your bills.
2. Debt collectors cannot reveal your debts to the general public. Debt collectors are not permitted to talk about your debt to your neighbors, friends, and those that are not obligated to pay your debt. Although a debt collector may contact a third person to locate you, they are not permitted disclose the details of your debt to a third party.
3. Your debt may be too old. Missouri give creditors 10 years on a written contract to enforce a claim. This time frame is reduced to 5 years for oral contracts. On open end accounts (example would be a Credit Card), the credit card company has 5 years to sue you. Sometimes, debt collectors do not have a valid claim against you due to this time restraint. It is wise for you to determine if the debt is too “old” to be valid. Furthermore, you should never admit to a debt without obtaining enough details.
4. Debt collectors must sue you. Debt collectors who are serious about collecting a debt will have to sue you. Sometimes, a debt collector will make threats about garnishing your wages. However, this is an empty threat because garnishment requires that they have proven you owed the debt in a court of law. In fact, they are not permitted to threaten to sue you if they have no real intention to do so.
5. Paying your debt won’t help your credit score. A collections account on your credit report will remain whether you pay the debt collector or not. Debt collectors may claim that if you pay, they will mark your account as “paid” and this will help your credit score. Unfortunately, paying the debt will not improve your credit score. However, it may prevent your score from going lower.
If you are harassed by debt collectors, we may be able to help. For more information, contact us!