"Collections" refers to the practices engaged in by creditors designed to obtain payment from debtors who are not interested in paying what they owe. In Maple Valley, Washington, there are many laws which strictly limit the practices that collections agencies can engage in.
What if I Am Owed Money in Maple Valley, Washington?
If someone owes you money and refuses to pay it, you have many 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 authorized to use abusive language to the debtor, or contact a third party about the debt.
You may, however, send a written demand for timely payment which lays out to the debtor clearly how much is owed. If a large amount of money is owed to you, it might be a good idea to hire a collections agency in Maple Valley, Washington. These agencies usually take their fee in the form of a percentage of the debt collected. You need to research agencies carefully however, and make sure the one you hire does not engage in illegal practices.
What if Someone Is Trying to Collect Money Against Me in Maple Valley, Washington?
If you really 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.
However, you do have some options in Maple Valley, Washington. 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 normally 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 Maple Valley, Washington lawyer to help, he or she might advise that you file for bankruptcy. If you do file for bankruptcy, creditors are immediately required to suspend all collection activities. Of course, bankruptcy is a major decision, and should not be made without the advice of an attorney.
How Can a Maple Valley, Washington Collections Attorney Help?
If you think that the collection agency is violating the law in its attempts to collect, you should probably call a Maple Valley, Washington attorney, since such behavior on the part of the creditor might actually give you a claim for damages against it.
Also, if you are considering bankruptcy as an option, a good Washington attorney can help guide you through the process.