In a perfect world, debt collectors would do what they’re supposed to without a bunch of laws to keep them in check. However, this world is definitely far from perfect, which means that you’re going to have to seriously start thinking about the type of treatment that you’re supposed to get.
Now, even though a debt collector’s behavior is generally covered under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, that doesn’t mean that they’re going to be sunshine and rainbows to deal with. You still want to make sure that you keep your guard up. You will still need to make sure that you’re thinking about how to get everything and everyone taken care of as much as possible. If you want to really make sure that everything is going to move along just fine, you need to know your laws. There’s really now ay to get around it — if you don’t know what collectors can and can’t do, then you’re always going to end up thinking that anything they say is fine because after all, you owe them money.
In a sense, you actually owe the original creditor. Since they’ve written off the debt, you do pay the collection agency. However, it doesn’t affect your credit rating as much as you think. All you will get for paying a charge off is “paid in full” or “settled for less than the full amount”. The best way to negotiate is to get a pay for delete situation, where the collection agency agrees to remove the tradeline and act like nothing else has happened. That’s going to be the best way to ensure that you have things together.
Not sure where to begin? Thankfully, we have you covered. There’s at least ten things that debt collector cannot do.
First and foremost, they cannot ask you to pay more than you owe. This is definitely the biggest one that you really need to pay attention to. The collector cannot tell you that you owe $1000 when you owe $800. [Read more…]