"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 Lawrence, New York 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 Lawrence, New York?
If someone owes you money and won't pay, you have some legal options to seek repayment of your debt. However, you need to be careful in this area. There are many laws and regulations detailing what debt collectors can and cannot do. Breaking these laws, even inadvertently, can harm your chances at collecting, and maybe even expose you to civil penalties.
For example, when attempting to collect, creditors are not allowed to use abusive language, contact any third party about the debt, and of course they are not allowed to use threats of violence in an attempt to get their money.
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 substantial, it might be worth it to hire a Lawrence, New York collection agency, which usually gets paid through a percentage of the debt collected. You should make sure, however, that the agency is trustworthy, and hasn't been cited for violations of consumer protection laws.
What if Someone Is Trying to Collect Money Against Me in Lawrence, New York?
If you truly owe the money being sought, and you are able to pay it, you should of course do so. If the collection caller is behaving cordially, you should do the same. Even if the caller doesn't behave in a cordial manner, you should resist the temptation 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 Lawrence, New York. 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 stop calling you, and they typically are obliged to do so. Of course, this doesn't eliminate 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 a Lawrence, New York attorney to help you through this process, he or she might advise that you declare bankruptcy. Once this occurs, creditors are legally barred from attempting to collect against the debtor. Of course, this is a major decision, and should not be made lightly.
How Can a Lawrence, New York Collections Attorney Help?
If you think that the collection agency is violating the law in its attempts to collect, you should probably call a Lawrence, New York attorney, since such actions on the part of the creditor might actually give you a claim for damages against it.
If you are thinking about bankruptcy, a good New York bankrutpcy attorney can help guide you through the process.