"Collections" refers broadly to the numerous tools that creditors have at their disposal to receive payment from debtors who are not paying what they owe. There are many Warrenton, 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 Warrenton, 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.
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 allowed 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 significant, it might be worth it to hire a Warrenton, Missouri 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 Warrenton, 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 cordial 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.
Your best option in Warrenton, Missouri 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 usually 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 generally leaves them with no other option but to sue.
If you have hired a lawyer in Warrenton, 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 Warrenton, 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 Warrenton, Missouri, as you might actually have a claim for damages against the collection agency.
If you are thinking about bankruptcy, a good Missouri bankrutpcy attorney can help guide you through the process.