"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 Punta Gorda, Florida governing the tactics that collection agencies can and cannot do.
What if I Am Owed Money in Punta Gorda, Florida?
If you are owed money and the debtor won't pay, for whatever reason, you are entitled to seek collection by any lawful means. Of course, the means of collection that are considered "lawful" are quite limited. You should be aware of the rules that govern collections before you proceed, as violating them can hurt your chances of collecting, and even expose you to liability.
Several practices that collectors cannot engage in include the use of abusive language, contacting third parties about the debt, and threatened or actual violence.
Creditors may, however, send written demands for timely payment, along with an invoice that precisely lays out exactly what the debtor owes. If the debt is significant, it might be worth it to hire a Punta Gorda, Florida collection agency, which usually gets paid through a percentage of the debt collected. You should make sure, however, that the agency is reputable, and hasn't been cited for violations of consumer protection laws.
What if Someone Is Trying to Collect Money Against Me in Punta Gorda, Florida?
If you actually owe the money that they are attempting 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 polite manner. In any event, you should never ignore the problem, as this usually makes things worse.
Fortunately, you have some options in Punta Gorda, Florida. First of all, you should attempt to contact the creditor directly, and see if something can be worked out. If this doesn't work, you can demand that the collection agency stop contacting you by phone. When this happens, they are not allowed to contact you further. This, of course, doesn't make the debt go away, but if the calls are becoming unbearable, it might buy you a little bit of time. Usually, when this happens, the creditor gives up on extra-judicial collections, and files a lawsuit against the debtor.
If you have hired a Punta Gorda, Florida attorney to help you through this process, he or she may advise that you declare bankruptcy. Once this occurs, creditors are legally barred from trying to collect against the debtor. Of course, this is a major decision, and should not be made lightly.
How Can a Punta Gorda, Florida 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 Punta Gorda, Florida attorney, since you might actually have a claim for damages against the creditor.
Also, if you're considering applying for bankruptcy, a seasoned attorney in Florida can tell you if this is a good option, and, if it is, help you through the process.