"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 Chapel Hill, North Carolina 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 Chapel Hill, North Carolina?
If someone owes you money and declines to pay it, you have various 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.
The law blocks creditors from engaging in any form of violence against the debtor in an attempt to collect. It additionally bars them from using abusive language or contacting third parties about the debt owed by the debtor.
You may, however, send a written demand for timely payment. The demand should lay out precisely how much the debtor allegedly owes. If there is a large amount of money involved, it may be worth it to hire a Chapel Hill, North Carolina collections agency, which will probably take its fee in the form of a percentage of the debt collected. You should do some research on different collections agencies in your area, to make sure the one you hire is trustworthy, and meticulously follows the law.
What if Someone Is Trying to Collect Money Against Me in Chapel Hill, North Carolina?
If you truly 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 polite 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 Chapel Hill, North Carolina 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 typically 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 usually leaves them with no other option but to sue.
If you have retained a Chapel Hill, North Carolina attorney during this process, they might advise that the best course of action is to apply for bankruptcy. This is a major decision, however, and should not be made easily. You should only apply for bankruptcy if an attorney advises you that it is a viable possible option, given your individual circumstances.
How Can a Chapel Hill, North Carolina Collections Attorney Help?
If you believe that the collections agency is engaging in unlawful or abusive activity, you should consult with a local attorney in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, as you may actually have a claim for damages against the collection agency.
If you are thinking about bankruptcy, a seasoned North Carolina bankrutpcy attorney can help guide you through the process.