Do your creditors or collection agencies harass you? They call you at any time of the day to threaten you if you do not pay? Did you know that the law regulates the recovery of debts and that you are protected? Do you know your rights?
Collection agencies call you?
If you have late accounts, it’s normal for your creditors to call you. If your creditors fail to collect their debts, it is also possible that they entrust your file to a collection agency. If this is the case, the creditor must notify you in writing. The collection agency will attempt to recover most of the debt as quickly as possible, but must do so under the Collection Act.
Be aware that collection agencies are often paid commission on the amount covered. For this reason, they are generally interested in finding common ground with you, even if it means that you will only pay back part of the debt. If possible, you have the advantage of making a payment agreement with them with fixed and realistic dates. If you make an agreement, make sure it is confirmed in writing.
10 points to clarify about collection agencies:
1. You have the right to verify that the collection agency is in good standing and holds a valid license. Validation of the permit is done through the Office of Consumer Protection.
2. You have the right to request a copy of the documents justifying your debt and the amounts owing. The agency must provide you with these documents within 30 days.
3. The collection agencies do not have the right to harass you, that is to say, to call you several times a day, to intimidate you, to threaten you that you will go to prison if you do not pay ( which is totally false) or to inform your relatives about your debt.
4. Collection agencies do not have the right to call you before 7am or after 9pm on weekdays and Saturdays, before 1pm or after 5pm on Sundays and public holidays.
5. Collection agencies do not have the right to communicate with your family, spouse, friends, family, employer, neighbors or anyone other than you.
6. Collection agencies do not have the right to communicate with you more than 3 times in the same week and for the same debt (debt).
7. Collection agencies must communicate with you at least once in writing before they can call you.
8. In voicemail messages they leave, collection agencies do not have the right to mention that it is a collection call, to talk about the debt in question or to disclose your personal information.
9. You may request by written notice that an agency only communicates with you in writing. This request will be valid for 3 months.
10. Collection agencies do not have the right to recover an amount greater than the debt or to charge you additional fees.
How to stop calls from collection agencies?
Of course, the easiest way to stop calls is to repay the debt in full. But if you’re reading this, it’s probably because this option is not possible in your current financial situation. Fortunately, you have alternatives.
The first alternative is to ask for a reduction in the amount of debt or to negotiate a more affordable payments arrangement for you. For example, you could offer to repay a $ 5,000 debt in 10 equal monthly payments of $ 500. Or, you could offer $ 2,500 a shot, then 5 monthly payments of $ 500.
If you are unable to offer a payment agreement or if it is refused by the agency, you can turn to a trustee who will advise you on the best solution for you. A possible solution with a trustee is the consumer proposal. A consumer proposal is a formal agreement between you and your creditors that allows you to free yourself from your debts by making affordable monthly payments without interest.
If the consumer proposal is not a solution for you, you still have the option to declare bankruptcy, which will have the effect of settling all your debts.