"Collections" is the process by which creditors try to get nonpaying debtors to pay the money they owe. There are a huge number of laws in La Canada Flintridge, California governing the tactics that collection agencies can and cannot do.
What if I Am Owed Money in La Canada Flintridge, California?
If somebody owes you money and is declining to pay, you have several options at your disposal. However, in doing so, you will be governed by very specific consumer protection rules that govern the collection of debts. Violating these rules can hurt your chances at effectively collecting, and might even expose you to civil liability.
As an example, when attempting to collect, creditors may not use abusive language, contact third parties regarding the debt, or use violence or threats of violence.
One thing you are allowed to do is send a written demand for immediate payment. The demand should lay out the precise amount you believe is owed, so the debtor cannot plausibly claim ignorance of that fact. If a lot of money is involved, it might be wise to hire a La Canada Flintridge, California collections agency. If you go this route, it is crucial to make sure that you hire an agency that is reputable, and follows the relevant law to the letter.
What if Someone Is Trying to Collect Money Against Me in La Canada Flintridge, California?
If you actually owe the money being sought, and you are able to pay it, you should of course do so. If the collection caller is behaving amicably, you should do the same. Even if the caller doesn't behave in an amicable manner, you should resist the urge to respond in kind, and ask to speak with a supervisor, or simply end the conversation. Whatever you do, you should never ignore the issue. This will not make the problem go away.
Luckily, you have some options in La Canada Flintridge, California. First of all, you should try to directly contact the creditor, and see if some altered payment plan can be worked out. If this doesn't work, you can ask the collectors to stop contacting you by phone, and they will usually be obliged to do so. Of course, this doesn't make the debt go away, but it may give you some time to collect yourself and prepare a legal defense. Once this happens, the collection agency can only contact you to inform you that it intends to sue you for the debt owed.
If you have hired a lawyer in La Canada Flintridge, California, they might advise that you apply for bankruptcy. Of course, whether or not this is a good idea depends strongly on the facts of your particular case, so you should not do so unless an attorney has reviewed the facts and determined that bankruptcy is a viable solution.
How Can a La Canada Flintridge, California Collections Attorney Help?
If you believe that a creditor is violating the law in its effort to collect from you, you should get in touch with a La Canada Flintridge, California attorney, since you may actually have a claim for damages against the creditor.
Also, if you're considering applying for bankruptcy, a seasoned attorney in California can tell you if this is a good option, and, if it is, help you through the process.