"Collections" refers to the process by which creditors try to get nonpaying debtors to pay what is owed. There are countless laws in Ann Arbor, Michigan regulating the conduct of collections agences.
What if I Am Owed Money in Ann Arbor, Michigan?
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.
The law prohibits creditors from engaging in any form of violence against the debtor in an attempt to collect. It also bars them from using abusive language or contacting third parties about the debt owed by the debtor.
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 Ann Arbor, Michigan 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 Ann Arbor, Michigan?
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 courteously, you should do the same. Even if the caller doesn't behave in a polite 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.
However, you do have some options in Ann Arbor, Michigan. 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 cease calling you, and they usually are obliged to do so. Of course, this doesn't expunge 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 an Ann Arbor, Michigan 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 Ann Arbor, Michigan Collections Attorney Help?
If you think that a collection agency is engaging in abusive tactics, you should call a local Ann Arbor, Michigan attorney, as you might have a claim for damages against the creditor or the collection agency.
If you are thinking about applying for bankruptcy, a seasoned lawyer in Michigan can help you with that process, too.