"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 Riverbank, California governing the tactics that collection agencies can and cannot do.
What if I Am Owed Money in Riverbank, California?
If somebody owes you money and is refusing to pay, you have various 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 permitted to use abusive language to the debtor, or contact a third party about the debt.
Creditors may, however, send written demands for timely payment, along with an invoice that clearly lays out exactly what the debtor owes. If the debt is substantial, it might be worth it to hire a Riverbank, California collection agency, which usually gets paid through a percentage of the debt collected. You should make sure, however, that the agency is trustworthy, and hasn't been cited for violations of consumer protection laws.
What if Someone Is Trying to Collect Money Against Me in Riverbank, California?
If you truly owe the money being sought, and you are able to pay it, you should of course do so. If the collection caller is behaving cordially, you should do the same. Even if the caller doesn't behave in a cordial manner, you should resist the temptation 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.
Your best option in Riverbank, California might be to contact the creditor directly, and try to work out some type of new repayment plan. The sooner you do this, the more receptive to your ideas the creditor is likely to be. If this isn't successful, you can demand that the collectors stop contacting you by phone, and they will typically be obliged to do so. Of course, this doesn't make the debt go away, and you should only take this route if you are prepared to defend against a lawsuit from your creditors, since demanding that they stop contacting you usually leaves them with no other option but to sue.
If you have hired a Riverbank, 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 Riverbank, California Collections Attorney Help?
If you think that a collection agency is engaging in unlawful tactics, you should call a local Riverbank, California attorney, as you might have a claim for damages against the creditor or the collection agency.
Also, if you're considering filing for bankruptcy, a good attorney in California can tell you if this is a good option, and, if it is, help you through the process.