What Should I Do If a Collections Agency Calls About Old Debt?

Posted by Erica Steeves on September 27, 2018

What Should I Do If a Collections Agency Calls About Old Debt?

Your Credit Minute Show Notes:

 
  • 00:00                                   What’s up guys. This is Nick Suggali with Credit News Daily.
  • 00:03                                   Great question of the day today. What should I do if a collection agency calls about an old debt? This is a simple answer. Do not engage. Do not engage. Don’t have a conversation. Don’t fight. Don’t do this back-and-forth. Do nothing, okay.
  • 00:22                                   Listen, if it’s a legitimate collection agency and they’re reaching out to you, they should be able to do it in writing. And when they do something in writing, you can reply in writing. And what happens, you have a paper trail, okay.
  • 00:32                                   You’re unsure if that debt is past the statutes of limitations? You’re unsure if the collection agency can verify the debt? You want to put them through the pressure of validating everything via the Fair D- Debt Collections Practices Act? Guess what? You can’t do that over the phone, you can only do that in writing.
  • 00:47                                   So my suggestion? If you do get on the phone by mistake with them, simply say this, “Hey Mr. Debt Collector, um, I don’t know who you are, I’m not validating everything. If you need to tell me anything, please send it in writing. [inaudible 00:01:01] have my address.” Click.
  • 01:03                                   Literally, click, okay? If they don’t have that information, they’re not legitimate, okay? Do not engage, do not verify anything. Um, one of the scams of a debt collection agency is they’ll call you and they’ll pressure you to make a five dollar payment towards a debt. Otherwise, they will send you to jail.
  • 01:20                                   Number one, they can’t send you to jail, and if you do send them five dollars in over the phone, guess what? You have re-initiated or restarted the statues of limitations. You’ve got another seven years of misery with that debt collection agency.
  • 01:32                                   Also, check some of our previous vlogs, okay? We have a reference point that shows you your state by state statutes of limitations, which shows you when each of these debts could possibly expire in the state that you live in. Okay?
  • 01:44                                   Also, even if a debt is within the statutes of limitations, what’s to say the debt collector can validate it, okay? Um, have you ever heard of something called the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act, probably haven’t. It’s pretty boring stuff. It’s on our website under the tab, “Credit Laws.” I would suggest reading through it or contact us to help you or assist you with this topic, okay?
  • 02:04                                   Ah, FDCPA, what it’s basically telling you is, “Hey, Mr. Debt Collector, you want money from a- a- um- ah, from a consumer? You need to be able to validate the debt. Show me um, your ability to buy debt my state. Show your license, your licensing to collect on debt in my state. Okay? Um, show me when the contract was signed, okay? Show me a copy of the contract. Show me copies of statements. Show me the bills. Show me proof of the date of last activity. If you have in fact, reported it to the credit agencies, okay?”
  • 02:37                                   Um, you know, validate that the statutes of limitation hasn’t in fact expired. Okay? So these are things you can ask for from these companies. But you should never, ever, ever engage over the phone. This is something you want to ask for via a letter, something you put in writing, something that should be sent to the debt collector. That way, you have your paper trail, you have everything dated, you can view registered letters if you don’t have a PO Box, so you know who’s signing for it.
  • 03:04                                   Um, but again, let’s get off the phone, guys. This is Nick Suggali with Credit News Daily, thank you for this amazing question. Let’s see where this one came out of. This one is out of let’s see here, we have Astoria, Queens, New York. All right guys, thank you so much. Have a great day.