"Collections" is the process by which creditors attempt to get nonpaying debtors to pay the money they owe. There are a large number of laws in Palo Alto, California governing the tactics that collection agencies can and cannot do.
What if I Am Owed Money in Palo Alto, California?
If somebody owes you money and is refusing to pay, you have several options at your disposal. However, in doing so, you will be governed by very strict consumer protection laws that govern the collection of debts. Breaking these rules can hurt your chances at successfully collecting, and might even expose you to civil liability.
For example, it should go without saying that creditors are not allowed to use threatened or actual violence when trying to collect. They are also not allowed to use abusive language to the debtor, or contact a third party about the debt.
What you can do, however, is send an invoice of the debt to the debtor, along with a firm (but civil) demand for timely payment. If the debt is significant, you might also want to hire a collection agency in Palo Alto, California. You should make sure that any agency you hire is reputable, and has not been cited for violations of the laws governing collections.
What if Someone Is Trying to Collect Money Against Me in Palo Alto, California?
If you actually owe the money that they are trying to collect, and are able to pay it, doing so would be your best option for ending the collections calls. Of course, this is not everybody's situation. When dealing with collectors, you should try to maintain the high ground by behaving in a calm and civil manner. In any event, you should never ignore the problem, as this usually makes things worse.
However, you do have some options in Palo Alto, California. First of all, you should make an effort to get in direct contact with the creditor, as opposed to the collection agency, and try to work something out. If this fails, you can tell the collections agency to stop calling you, and they usually are obliged to do so. Of course, this doesn't eliminate the debt, but it can buy you some time. You should know, however, that when you show that you are not interested in dealing with the creditors or collectors directly, they will usually resort to a lawsuit.
If you have hired a Palo Alto, California attorney to help you through this process, he or she might advise that you declare bankruptcy. Once this occurs, creditors are legally barred from attempting to collect against the debtor. Of course, this is a major decision, and should not be made lightly.
How Can a Palo Alto, California Collections Attorney Help?
If you believe that a creditor is violating the law in its attempts to collect from you, you should get in touch with a Palo Alto, California attorney, since you might actually have a claim for damages against the creditor.
If you are thinking about bankruptcy, a good California bankrutpcy attorney can help guide you through the process.