"Collections" refers broadly to the countless tools that creditors have at their disposal to acquire payment from debtors who are not paying what they owe. There are many Bay St. Louis, Mississippi 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 Bay St. Louis, Mississippi?
If someone owes you money and declines to pay it, you have several options at your disposal. However, when it comes to collecting their debts, creditors are governed by specific consumer protection rules. Violation of these rules while attempting to collect could hurt your chances at effectively recovering your money, and/or subject you to civil penalties.
For example, it should go without mentioning that creditors are not allowed to use threatened or actual violence when attempting 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 precisely lays out exactly what the debtor owes. If the debt is significant, it might be worth it to hire a Bay St. Louis, Mississippi 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 Bay St. Louis, Mississippi?
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.
Your best option in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi might be to contact the creditor directly, and try to work out some type of new repayment plan. The earlier 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 ready 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 Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, they might advise that you apply for bankruptcy. Of course, whether or not this is a good idea depends strongly on the facts of your particular case, so you should not do so unless an attorney has reviewed the facts and determined that bankruptcy is a viable solution.
How Can a Bay St. Louis, Mississippi 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 Bay St. Louis, Mississippi attorney, since you may actually have a claim for damages against the creditor.
Also, if you're considering applying for bankruptcy, a seasoned attorney in Mississippi can tell you if this is a good option, and, if it is, help you through the process.