"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 Oelwein, Iowa governing the tactics that collection agencies can and cannot do.
What if I Am Owed Money in Oelwein, Iowa?
If someone owes you money and won't pay, you have several legal options to seek repayment of your debt. However, you need to be careful in this area. There are many rules and regulations detailing what debt collectors can and cannot do. Violating these laws, even inadvertently, can harm your chances at collecting, and maybe even expose you to civil penalties.
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 an Oelwein, Iowa 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 Oelwein, Iowa?
If you actually owe the money that is being sought, and can afford to pay it, you should do so. If the collection caller is behaving in an amicable manner, you should try to do the same. In any case, the worst thing you can do is ignore the issue hoping that it will go away. It won't.
Fortunately, you have some options in Oelwein, Iowa. 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 an Oelwein, Iowa lawyer to help, he or she may advise that you file for bankruptcy. If you do apply for bankruptcy, creditors are immediately required to suspend all collection activities. Of course, bankruptcy is a major decision, and should not be made without the advice of an attorney.
How Can a Oelwein, Iowa 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 an Oelwein, Iowa attorney, since you might actually have a claim for damages against the creditor.
If you are thinking about applying for bankruptcy, a seasoned lawyer in Iowa can help you with that process, too.