"Collections" refers broadly to the many tools that creditors have at their disposal to obtain payment from debtors who are not paying what they owe. There are many Kansas City, Missouri laws and regulations concerning the conduct of collections agencies, and what they can and cannot do in order to collect.
What if I Am Owed Money in Kansas City, Missouri?
If someone owes you money and refuses to pay it, you have several options at your disposal. However, when it comes to collecting their debts, creditors are governed by strict consumer protection rules. Violation of these rules while attempting to collect could hurt your chances at successfully recovering your money, and/or subject you to civil penalties.
As an example, when trying to collect, creditors may not use abusive language, contact third parties regarding the debt, or use violence or threats of violence.
You may, however, send a written demand for timely payment. The demand should lay out exactly how much the debtor allegedly owes. If there is a large amount of money involved, it might be worth it to hire a Kansas City, Missouri collections agency, which will probably take its fee in the form of a percentage of the debt collected. You should do some research on various collections agencies in your area, to make sure the one you hire is reputable, and scrupulously follows the law.
What if Someone Is Trying to Collect Money Against Me in Kansas City, Missouri?
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 a civil 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.
Luckily, you have some options in Kansas City, Missouri. First of all, you should attempt to directly contact the creditor, and see if some modified payment plan can be worked out. If this doesn't work, you can ask the collectors to stop contacting you by phone, and they will usually be obliged to do so. Of course, this doesn't make the debt go away, but it might give you some time to collect yourself and prepare a legal defense. Once this happens, the collection agency can only contact you to inform you that it intends to sue you for the debt owed.
If you have hired a lawyer in Kansas City, Missouri, they might advise that you file for bankruptcy. Of course, whether or not this is a good idea depends heavily on the facts of your particular case, so you should not do so until an attorney has reviewed the facts and determined that bankruptcy is a viable solution.
How Can a Kansas City, Missouri Collections Attorney Help?
If you believe that the collections agency is engaging in illegal or abusive activity, you should consult with a local attorney in Kansas City, Missouri, as you might actually have a claim for damages against the collection agency.
Also, if you're considering filing for bankruptcy, a good attorney in Missouri can tell you if this is a good option, and, if it is, help you through the process.