Disappearing Debtors: Improving Your Chances of Successful Debt Collection

Few people are knowledgeable when it comes to collecting money and commercial debt recovery agencies. Debts have mounted throughout world economies and the need for collection agencies have risen. Business to business debt collection is often most successful when a professional collection agency is involved.

Few people are knowledgeable when it comes to collecting money and commercial debt recovery agencies. Debts have mounted throughout world economies and the need for collection agencies have risen. Business to business debt collection is often most successful when a professional collection agency is involved. Collection agencies are like dentists in the sense that you hope you never need one but if you do you want the best. There are thousands of collection agencies in the United States to choose from. The Stevens-Lloyd Group has over 60 years of combined experience in the commercial debt collection arena. As a commercial debt recovery firm, we understand the urgency of recovering outstanding accounts receivables.

But imagine dealing with a debtor who suddenly disappears by changing their address and contact information without notifying you. It might at that point seem like you have lost your money, but you must bear in mind that it is unlikely that anyone would be able to simply vanish off the earth’s surface.

When placing business with a corporate debt recovery firm, to ensure the highest possible rate of success at locating debtor companies, be sure to provide as much information as possible. The more knowledge the commercial collections agency obtains from their clients the greater the chances of successful debt recovery.

This material must include names of owners, officers or directors and spouses. Moreover, business and personal addresses, telephone numbers and email addresses are critical pieces of information. By providing this information and maintaining communication with the commercial collection agency, the process will be less frustrating and more effective.

Prior to placing the account with the commercial collection agency, we recommend that the creditor mail a firm ten-day demand letter to the debtor which incorporates a deadline of payment in full. This enables them to understand how long they have left to pay the debt before the file is placed with an outside debt collector. If the debtor company does not respond or effect payment in full after a few letters, making phone calls and demands for payment need to take place. However, if the debtor avoids communication or disappears, it is time to deploy a professional debt recovery firm.

Furthermore, when you employ the services of a business collection agency, make sure you utilize a firm who will not harass and intimidate your customers and operates in an honest and ethical fashion. If the debtor cannot be located, another option the collection agency may have is to retain private investigators who can conduct a skip tracing investigation and locate the new address and contact information of the debtor company. This could prove to be most effective in ultimately recovering your money. And working with a commercial collection with experience dealing with a multitude of different industries, debt can be successfully collected from anyone, anywhere.

How hard is it for UK Businesses to collect debts in the USA?

The United States is a global leader when it comes to business transactions. However, the trade gap between international countries and the United States has been bridged. Due to the increased level of import-export trade between the U.S. and other countries, it will not be uncommon for debts to be accrued.

The United States is a global leader when it comes to business transactions. However, the trade gap between international countries and the United States has been bridged. Due to the increased level of import-export trade between the U.S. and other countries, it will not be uncommon for debts to be accrued. America currently imports 2.2 billion goods which are 1.6 billion more than it exports. Among all the nations the U.S. trades with, the United Kingdom has one of the lowest import/export ratios of indebtedness.

Due to the skyrocketing ratio of import/export trade worldwide, it is imperative for creditors in the U.K. and worldwide to obtain information pertaining to debt recovery in the United States.

The roles played by Credit Bureaus and collection agencies

The Stevens-Lloyd Group, who specializes in domestic and international debt recovery, understands that there is a wealth of credit information in the United States, more so than in other countries. Credit reporting agencies utilize sophisticated computer databases which can decipher the credit risk of numerous business owners who have established credit. The information provided by the databases helps to determine if there is a need to initiate the collection process or start litigation.

In the U.S, there is a wide range of debt collection agencies. Some of these debt collection agencies have branches throughout the country. Due to the nature of their business, debt collection agencies are regulated by federal and state law. For foreign creditors, collecting debts in the United States can be daunting. Moreover, the legal system in America can favor the debtors in certain situations. This is because of perceived harassment by creditors and debt recovery firms during the collection process.

When collection agencies are unable to effect collections on a voluntary basis from the debtors, they may recommend that legal action take place. The case will be referred to a licensed debt collection attorney who can handle it in the state where the debtor company resides. When a case is referred to an attorney by a collection agency, the collection agency and the attorney will work on a contingency basis. The creditor needs to know that they are responsible for paying the court costs associated with the state or jurisdiction which the debtor company is located in.

Debt Recovery in the United States
Collecting debts from the USA is not an impossible task. The presence of collection agencies has helped alleviate the burden associated with recovering outstanding debts.

When a creditor from the UK contacts a collection agency about collecting their debt, the collection agency will make a demand on the debtor and insist that any balance owed is cleared immediately. At the Stevens-Lloyd group, 30 days is all we allow before the legal process is initiated. We will effectuate an asset and liability investigation on the debtor company. Assets of the company, corporate status, number of staff employed, how large the business is and how long it has been in operations are some of the areas covered. This information will be utilized to strategize how the outstanding balance can be resolved either voluntarily or involuntarily.

What happens if the company vanishes?

It so happens that sometimes, debtors abandon ship and disappear. They either choose to close shop or change location. They even go the extra mile by changing aliases. Collection agencies embark on extensive research by contacting neighboring businesses as well as friends and relatives of the owners. Sometimes addresses and telephone numbers can be obtained by this procedure as well as deploying skip-tracing software.

Payment plans and settlement agreements

If the debtors have been contacted and the collection agent determines that payment in full cannot be achieved, a payment arrangement may be arranged. Or if there is a dispute and a need for the creditor to accept a lesser amount than the outstanding debt, a settlement agreement can be reached.

If legal action is necessary, the collection agency will work with their attorneys and commence legal action. If the attorney firm is unable to pressure the debtor to pay their outstanding balance, the attorney will utilize legal force to recover what is owed. This involves procuring a Judgment and garnishing bank accounts and receivables.

What should the creditor take into consideration regarding filing legal action?
To determine if it is worth filing a lawsuit to recover your debt, here are some points to consider.

  • Is the claim large enough to sue?
  • Is the business still operating?
  • Where can the Service of Process be made?
  • Does the debtor have enough assets to pay the debt?
  • Do you have enough documentation to back up the claim in case of a dispute?

Is there a likelihood of the debtor filing a countersuit?

Conclusively, if all the due processes are taken into consideration, it will be entirely possible for UK businesses to collect debts in the US. If you are searching for an expert debt recovery firm to assist you with your business debt collection issues, we suggest you reach out to The Stevens-Lloyd Group. We will answer any questions and assist you with your situation.

Debt Collection Strategies to Collect Debt from Stubborn Clients

As a creditor, it is your right to get your money back which you have given to clients. You have the power to shut down their business if they fail or ignore to pay you. However, in case, your all efforts to collect the debt get unsuccessful, you can take the advantage of debt collection services.

As a creditor, it is your right to get your money back which you have given to clients. You have the power to shut down their business if they fail or ignore to pay you. However, in case, your all efforts to collect the debt get unsuccessful, you can take the advantage of debt collection services. There are many ways to recover debts from clients who refuse to pay.

Whether it’s a new client or an old one, you have the right and obligation to collect the amount you are owed. In case, all your attempts have failed to recover a debt, these are some business debt collection strategies may help you to recuperate your cash.

Keep Calm
Staying calm is necessary when it comes to debt recovery. Of course, if clients do not pay you or refuse to pay the money, it is natural that you may get infuriated. However, it is better to keep calm. Getting angry and using abusive language against them is not the right solution. The angrier you get on them, the less likely you recover your debt. Your wrath will be felt by the clients. They will take it personally and keep grudges against you which make them non-cooperating.

Your mental state affects the way you handle the debtors and the way they respond to you. For instance, if you are calling debt defaulters for the first time to remind them for debt recovery, put a smile on your face and talks to him politely. In case, your mood is not good, take a few minutes to calm down yourself before talking to them. Depending on your tone, they will respond accordingly. The more polite to talk to them, you are like to get a more positive response from them.

Know About Your Rights

If you do not have any experience of business debt collection then you are possibly searching your way through the procedure of payments collection. So, it is required for you to know your legal rights. Once you understand the legal actions which you can or cannot take, you will become more confident while interacting with your clients. For instance, you can take a legal step to know about the social security number of someone in order to move things along.

Keep Everything in Records

In every small or large business, it is important to keep everything documented. When you have all documentation with you, it will help you to fight a legal battle in the court against the debt defaulters. Even if you talk to clients over the phone regarding anything related to debt. Record the call or take notes. In case, if you send debt related emails to clients then copy or certify every letter and save the emails. Keep the record of visits you make to the clients home or office.

Do not Harass

Many people think that harassing people to recover the debt is one of the best debt recovery solutions. However, they are wrong. Harassing includes screaming or abusing clients and calling them every day. It will make your reputation bad in the market. Instead of doing all these things, your persistence is more important. Calling your clients every 7-10 days and providing them with various options to pay your money makes a better sense to recover the debt from them.

Hire a Debt Collection Agency

There are some stubborn clients who ignore to pay your amount. In case, you have a lot of debt amount to recover and are unable to recover the amount, then hiring a debt collection agency will worth your time. Doing this will save your time and also provide you with better results. Professional debt collectors also help to keep you out of legal trouble.
Debt recovery is not a fun. Sometimes, you will feel like you are too harsh towards your clients or other times you will feel like that you are being pushed over. Following the above-mentioned tips will help you to have some success when it comes to collect the debt.

In-House Debt Collections, TM Building

With billions and billions of dollars in debt worldwide, both creditors and collection agencies are feeling the pressure. Debt collectors looking to recover outstanding receivables must employ techniques that will encourage debtors to pay.

  • Overview With billions and billions of dollars in debt worldwide, both creditors and collection agencies are feeling the pressure. Debt collectors looking to recover outstanding receivables must employ techniques that will encourage debtors to pay. Successful debt collection and outstanding receivables collection techniques will help the collector get the account settled immediately, while still being mindful of the laws that protect debtors.
  • Background TM Building Damage Restoration, a licensed general contractor located in Tucson, Arizona for over 30 years. The company has a part owner with a dynamic and energetic person who serves in two capacities; Marketing Director and In-House Collections Manager. She faces many challenges and frustrations as an in-house-collector. She frequently encounters many excuses from client’s delinquent in paying their invoices. Excuses include, “I never received a bill”, “My invoice was incorrect”, or “TM Building Damage Restoration [allegedly] didn’t do all of the work”. She feels that approximately one-third of her cases were downright fraudulent.
  • Solution In 2012, TM Building enlisted the assistance of The Stevens-Lloyd Group, Inc. to help tackle their commercial debt recovery problem. The Stevens-Lloyd Group helped create and implement a program which proved successful in recovering nearly all of TM Building Damage Restoration’s outstanding receivables! Some of the tactics used in helping collect the commercial debt included:
    • utilizing an extensive phone log to keep detailed call records
    • conduct research on her customers utilizing TM Building’s database
    • calling weekly on all accounts 30 days past completion
    • focused mainly on receivables between the $7,000 to $9,000 range
    • asks for payment in full
  • We were happy to assist our client in crafting an in-house debt collection process. That is just one of the services we offer at Stevens-Lloyd Group. For more information on other techniques please read https://www.stevenslloydgroup.com/debt-recovery/collection-agency-credit-managemet-recover-outstanding-receivables/ The key to our success was perseverance and know-how from our collectors and attorneys in Florida and California. As a result, the Stevens-Lloyd Group was able to effect payment in full for GM Air on an account which would’ve been written off by our client or a less effective commercial debt recovery firm.
  • Recommendation
    Team up with a world-class commercial debt collection agency to help recover unpaid debts and institute an effective debt recovery system. In our experience, successfully collecting on past due accounts has a lot to do with the expertise of the collector. The more seasoned the collectors, the better the results. For companies without internal collection expertise we recommend turning accounts over sooner, 60 – 90 days. For larger corporate companies with experienced collection teams, we recommend turning over past due accounts at 120 days. If you have accounts that are over 180 days past due, we recommend IMMEDIATELY turning them over to a collection professional. Remember, the likelihood of collecting drops to 50% Between 6 – 9 months past due.

 

Credit Management Services: 5 Additional Tips for Guaranteeing Recovery of Your Accounts Receivables

In our first installment of our Credit Management Services series, we discussed the importance of deploying successful debt collection techniques in order to help the creditor immediately settle their outstanding accounts receivables. In that article, we introduced you to Joy Paul, an in-house Collection Manger for TM Building Damage Restoration, the issues…

In our first installment of our Credit Management Services series, we discussed the importance of deploying successful debt collection techniques in order to help the creditor immediately settle their outstanding accounts receivables. In that article, we introduced you to Joy Paul, an in-house Collection Manager for TM Building Damage Restoration, the issues she faced when attempting to collect, and 7 of her Tips for Success to Guarantee Recovery 100% of Your Outstanding Receivables.

If you have not had a chance to read that previous article you can do so by CLICK HERE.

In Today’s post we are continuing on with Joy’s Tips for collection of Your Accounts Receivables.
Tip #8 – Make Copies Of All Checks Received

Joy posts all checks she receives utilizing QuickBooks. This goes along with what we’ve discussed earlier
– documenting everything!

Tip #9 – Attend A Collection Law Seminar.

Joy attended a collection law seminar. The course taught her, among other things, the need for a punch list (discrepancies) such as having to amend the roof, warranties, etc.

The course also studied and examined the Federal Fair Debt Practice Act (FFDPA). The FFDPA applies to all persons attempting to collect a debt. For example, there are things you can’t say and times you can’t call, for instance before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. You must disclose the nature of your call. The FFDCPA regulates all activities. For a complete synopsis of the FFDCPA, see
https://www.ftc.gov/enforcement/rules/rulemaking-regulatory-reform-proceedings/fair-debt-collection-practices-act-text

It is important to ascertain whether your claim is commercial or individual. Mostly, FDCPA laws don’t apply when collecting against businesses that owe money. For example, it is okay to email and send faxes if the claim is for a commercial debt.

Even though the FDCPA is designed for the consumer, you do want to comply with the FDCPA within reason. Common sense facets to consider are not to make false threats of lawsuits, don’t harass the debtor, and keep conversation clean and professional. The latter is much more effective than yelling and screaming, which are completely ineffective!

Use finesse and tact. For instance, state that “I know that your company wants to do the right thing” or “We are not set up as a bank or lending institution.”

Tip #10 – Demand Letters


(Click on the image for a larger view)

Accounts Receivables | Debt Collection Demand LetterFor problem accounts, Joy deploys six invoices or demand letters asking for immediate payment. Your goals are to get the debtor’s attention, avoid being ignored, avoid any misunderstandings, and to get paid-in-full promptly. Make it clear when the bill is to be paid, how much, any discounts or penalties applicable, and in some cases, the consequences for not paying. Below is format Joy utilizes in her “Final Demand Letter”.

Joy utilizes a 10-day Demand Letter. This would be the 6th letter or invoice. Allow debtor 10 business days to pay. An account over 90 days is considered past-due.

See example to the right:

Tip #11 – Work Authorizations/Written Agreements


(Click on the image for a larger view)

Accounts Receivables | Work Authorization FormThrough the use of a work authorization form or proposal, Joy is able to recover collection fees, attorney’s fees and interest should legal action be deemed necessary. The work authorization form serves as a contract and detailed verbiage is stated at the bottom of the form.

In your business, if there are predictable reasons why debtors think they don’t need to pay, acknowledge those reasons. If you don͛t persist and you won’t be paid. For example, Joy in her work authorization form states that if the insurance company doesn’t pay it’s the responsibility of the customer to pay.

See example to the right:

As you can see, all of the terms and conditions are spelled out on the contract, including the fact that if the insurance doesn’t pay, the company will be responsible to pay TM Building. The proposal is in case of an out of pocket cost or upgrade.

Tip #12 – Personal Guarantees

It is a good idea to obtain personal guarantees and credit applications. If a company is sold or goes out of business, the personal guarantor can be contacted at home and a demand can be made against him personally.

On corporate debts, if the guarantor signs the PG as John Smith, President; this voids the effect of the PG. In this case, he would be signing it only as an agent of the corporation. The same principle applies for signers of NSF checks.

If a company is sold, the new owners will be responsible if the product was purchased after the sale date. Prior to the sale date, the old owners are liable.

If a company changes names, procure a new credit application and personal guarantee. If this hasn’t been done, it is possible that a claim can be made against the successor company. The sale can be considered as a constructive merger if a pattern of continuity can be established. Examples would be same management, same employees and the same shareholders.

Disputes

Joy discovered that in many cases, the debtor manufactures a dispute because they don’t want to pay. Through experience, she is skillfully able to get the debtor to admit how much they owe net of credit, the amount not in dispute. Never let the debtor off the hook without that information.

An example would be a $3,500 claim, debtor disputes $500 and $3,000 is admitted. An appropriate question: “When can I count on your check of $3,000, Mr. Jones?” Force-feed the debtor. Close the deal and confirm in writing

Aerospace Industry Debt Collection Laws

With the expected growth in the Aviation and Aerospace industry due to increased defense spending comes with it more bad debt issues. With millions of Americans in debt, debt collection has become a booming industry. In 2004 alone, the debt collection industry made over $16.5 billion in profit. With so much money on the line, debt collection agencies…

With the expected growth in the Aviation and Aerospace industry due to increased defense spending comes with it more bad debt issues. With millions of Americans in debt, debt collection has become a booming industry. In 2004 alone, the debt collection industry made over $16.5 billion in profit. With so much money on the line, debt collection agencies representing the aerospace industry are under a lot of pressure. In some cases, this pressure has resulted in abusive and often aggressive behavior leaving many debtors feeling intimidated.

In order to protect debtors from this type of aggressive behavior, the United States Congress passed several debt collection laws to help keep debt collectors and debt collection agencies in check. The debt collection laws make sure that the growth of the debt collection agency is coupled with the values of good service and integrity.

The primary debt collection law is the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) of 1977. FDCPA specifies the best practices in which debt collectors must conduct themselves, placing measures prohibiting debt collectors from engaging in certain activities. Some of these measures include the following:

  • Violations of Privacy – Debt collectors can only talk to other people for the purpose of finding your current location. They are not allowed to disclose any information regarding an outstanding or the terms of the debt collection process.
  • Unfair Calls or Visits – According to debt collection laws, especially the FDCPA, debt collectors are not allowed to appear at your aerospace industry company’s doorstep whenever they want to. They are only allowed to call or visit your debtor between the hours of 8:00 am and 9:00 pm. Debt collectors are also prohibited from appearing at your debtor’s place of business if they have been previously informed them that they are against such visits.
  • False Representation – The debt collector cannot intimidate a business owner or private investor with false authority; they cannot say that they are a lawyer or law firm representing your aerospace industry business if they are not. The debt collector cannot inform your debtor that they have the power to personally repossess items or inventory. They also cannot present documents that give the appearance their actions are directed by the US or State Governments.

However, the FDCPA is not the only law that is related to debt collection in the aerospace industry. Individual states usually have their own debt collection laws that are imposed to provide protection for their residents. For example: in California, debt collection laws require the debtor to keep written records of communications and transactions with the debt collector.

On the other hand, in Pennsylvania the Fair Credit Extension Uniformity Act was passed helping protect debtors from the deceptive behaviors of debt collectors. This act supports the FDCPA and it states that debt collectors CANNOT falsely imply that their inability to pay their debt to your aerospace industry related business is a crime. The debt collection laws of Pennsylvania also detail that debt collectors are not allowed to issue false threats of legal action.

All of these debt collection laws at both the Federal and State levels, have one thing in common: they help protect debtors from being abused by eager aerospace industry debt collectors.

Do you have a question about the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act or debt collection laws in your state in regards to the aerospace industry? Feel free to contact the Stevens-Lloyd Group, Inc today.

Working With A Commercial Collections Agency

So you’ve done your due diligence* and selected the right commercial collection agency for your business͛ needs, what now? Although you may feel that your work is done having handed your debt collection efforts off to the professionals, it is still important for you to take an active role in the relationship you have when working with a Commercial Collections Agency. Although you hired the agency for their …

So you’ve done your due diligence and selected the right commercial collection agency for your business’ needs, what now? Although you may feel that your work is done having handed your debt collection efforts off to the professionals, it is still important for you to take an active role in the relationship you have when working with a Commercial Collections Agency. Although you hired the agency for their expertise, experience, and sound judgment, the agency can better do its job with you taking an active role in your working relationship.

*Be sure to read our article on 5 Things to Consider When Hiring a Business Collection Agency

Think of your agency as a partner, somebody to work with and not just an outsourced contractor. If possible, meet with your agency’s representative periodically to review the status of your accounts. If this option is unavailable due to logistics, have regular communication with them via the phone or email. Be sure to insist on prompt responses to your calls or emails, it’s not too much for you to ask for phone calls and/or emails should be responded to within one business day. However, in doing so, make sure you reciprocate. Respect goes both ways.

Working with a Commercial Collections Agency

In order to ensure the highest possible rate of returns on your outstanding receivables, when working with a commercial collections agency, be sure to provide them with as much information about the debt and debtor as possible. The more information the commercial collections agency has the more potential money you will be able to collect. That information should include the following:

  • Any names associated with the debtor: Debtor’s name, spouse, friends, relatives and/or neighbors, including any nicknames, maiden names, aliases, etc.
  • Addresses: business and personal.
  • Contact information: telephone numbers, business and personal, including cell phone numbers, and any and all email addresses associated with the account.
  • Purchase and/or transaction details, including dates, amounts, type of, etc.
  • Any paperwork related to the transaction, including contracts and credit applications.
  • Any and all correspondence you have had with the debtor, including any feedback or acknowledgments to your debt collection efforts you have received.

By providing the above information and maintaining communication when working with a commercial collections agency you can help reduce frustrations and could very well speed up the commercial collections process.

If you are a business owner trying to collect on past-due accounts, a reputable Commercial Debt Collection Firm can often help.

We invite you to give The Stevens-Lloyd Group, Inc. a try…

Place an account with us right now and see what we can do for you!

It’s easy. Here’s all you need to do:

Just fill out this convenient online placement sheet. Once it’s sent, you’ll be on the road to discovering The StevensLloyd Group, Inc. difference!

When Debt Collectors Cross the Line: Illegal Collection Tactics

If you have ever been behind on your bills and been on the receiving end of collection phone calls, you have probably heard collection agents make some very threatening statements. While most debt collection professionals refrain from illegal collection tactics and stay within the boundaries defined by the Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), many others…

If you have ever been behind on your bills and been on the receiving end of collection phone calls, you have probably heard collection agents make some very threatening statements. While most debt collection professionals refrain from illegal collection tactics and stay within the boundaries defined by the Federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), many others cross the line on a regular basis.

In 2015, the Federal Trade Commission (www.ftc.gov) received more than 897,000 complaints about debt collectors, representing 29% of the total number of complaints received all year. In fact, The FTC has sued over 30 debt collection companies and individuals for violating the law and has permanently banned them from the industry.

Consumers complain about the collection industry more than all other industries combined.Collection professionals would probably respond that the enormous size of the industry and the sheer volume of collection activity accounts for the large number of complaints. However, only a small percentage of violations are actually reported by consumers, so the data collected by the FTC represents only a tiny fraction of the true scope of the problem. Even so, a pattern of abusive and illegal collection tactics has been well documented by the FTC, and it is getting worse instead of better.

The following are some common illegal collection tactics and harassment made by debt collectors:

  • “We’re going to take your house unless you pay this bill immediately.”This is a bogus threat. Unless the debt being collected is secured by the house in question (i.e., a mortgage or home equity loan), the creditor does not have the power to take your house away from you.
  • “If you don’t pay this bill today, we’re going to have a warrant issued for your arrest.”Nonsense. Failure to pay a debt is a civil matter, not a criminal matter. Threatening a debtor with jail time or accusing them of committing a crime is totally against the rules.
  • “We don’t care that you sent a cease communication notice. We’re going to call you anyway.”The FDCPA gives you the right to terminate contact efforts by a debt collector. Failure to respect a cease communication notice is a clear violation of Federal law.
  • “We’re going to garnish your wages to recover this debt.”A collector can only threaten action it has the legal authority to take, and the vast majority of collection agencies have zero legal authority. Your wages can only be garnished by a creditor after they have won a judgment against you in a lawsuit.
  • “We know where you live, so you better pay up.”Yes, threats of violence still happen in this industry. Nearly 3000 complaints against collectors received by the FTC last year cited the threat of violence as the cause of the complaint. This is absolutely illegal.

Other Illegal Collection Actions

Aside from the above bogus threats, collectors also use other illegal collection tactics. For example, discussing your debt with a third party is a clear violation of the FDCPA. Yet collectors routinely call neighbors, relatives, and employers to obtain information on debtors. So long as the collector does not discuss the actual matter of the debt, they still have their toes on the right side of the line. But as soon as they mention or even hint that they are calling about a debt, they have crossed the line.

Since many debtors have taken to screening their phone calls at home to cut down on the relentless barrage, debt collectors frequently call them at work (when they can obtain the number). In theory, a consumer can get the collector to stop calling their workplace simply by stating that they are not allowed to receive personal phone calls at work. That puts the collector on notice that such activity constitutes interference with the consumer’s employment, which is not permitted. In practice, however, collectors routinely ignore this rule and continue to call at work.

There are many other illegal collection tactics and techniques of harassment and intimidation that cross the line from permissible to impermissible collection activity. Use of obscene or profane language, shouting, constant and unrelenting telephone calls, failure to respond to written disputes, and publication of debtor information all constitute illegal activity as defined by the FDCPA.

What can you do to protect yourself?

If you are on the receiving end of illegal collection tactics, it’s important to know and understand your rights as a consumer. A description of your rights under The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act may be obtained directly from the FTC (http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/conline/pubs/credit/fdc.htm).

If you believe that a collector has violated your rights in their attempt to collect from you, then you should not hesitate to file formal complaints with the Attorney General for your state (www.naag.org) as well as the Federal Trade Commission. If enough complaints are received about a particular collector, then these authorities are empowered to bring an enforcement action against them, which may result in expensive fines that will make the agency or collector think twice about using such tactics in the future. You also have the right to bring a lawsuit yourself against a collector that harasses or abuses you, or otherwise violates your rights under the law.

One final point: The FDCPA technically only applies to third-party debt collectors, which includes commercial collection agencies and collection attorneys. It does not apply to the original creditor when collecting their own debt. For example, if you borrow money from a bank, the bank is not regulated by the FDCPA.

However, numerous other public laws protect consumers from deceptive or abusive collection practices even by original creditors, and many states also have laws that parallel the FDCPA but go further and include original creditors in the definition of a debt collector.

So if an original creditor is harassing you or has crossed the line, you should still file a complaint with your state’s Attorney General as well as the FTC. If a clear pattern of abuse emerges, the original creditor can be charged with unfair or deceptive acts or practices, either under state law or under the FTC Act that governs the conduct of commerce in our country.

To sum up, if you are on the receiving end of illegal collection tactics, action and/or harassment, don’t just take it. Educate yourself on your rights as a consumer, vigorously dispute debts that you don’t believe you owe and take action yourself in the form of complaints to your Attorney General and the Federal Trade Commission.

By standing up for your rights, you can put a stop to bogus threats and illegal collection tactics.

Getting the Best Service from Your Commercial Debt Collection Firm

As you are no doubt are aware, there are many commercial debt collection firms available for you to choose from. While most of those companies are more than effective at recovering debt, it should be noted that each commercial debt collection firm usually focuses on a specific type of industry or size of the company…

As you are no doubt are aware, there are many commercial debt collection firms available for you to choose from. While most of those companies are more than effective at recovering debt, it should be noted that each commercial debt collection firm usually focuses on a specific type of industry or size of the company.

For instance, if you are owed money from a small business, you would want to talk to a commercial debt collection firm that specializes in debt collection recovery from small business owners. On the other hand, if you are dealing with a Fortune 500 corporation owing your company a substantial amount of debt, then a commercial debt collection firm that has experience and legal know-how to work with large, powerful corporations is ultimately necessary.

Professionalism is key when choosing the right Commercial Debt Collection Firm for your needs.

The commercial collections industry is replete with stories of commercial debt recovery gone horribly wrong due to unscrupulous collection efforts and shifty agents working on behalf of the company. By attempting to collect your outstanding debt using unprofessional techniques, you will more than likely not only fail at recovering the debt but could very well damage your business͛ reputation along the way.

Make sure you choose a commercial debt collection firm that is highly professional, knows and abides by the laws regarding debt recovery – especially in international debt recovery situations –and handles themselves correctly when attempting to recover a debt, particularly in sensitive situations.

The right commercial debt collection company knows how to recover your outstanding debt in a professional manner, causing minimal ripples along the way, while keeping your reputation intact.

Commercial Collections – A Business’ Best Option

Unlike consumer debts, commercial debt balances tend to be considerably higher, often times leaving businesses in a precarious position not having access to much-needed capital. When internal efforts to collect on a commercial debt prove unsuccessful, one of the most important steps a business owner can take is to contact a commercial collections agency…

Unlike consumer debts, commercial debt balances tend to be considerably higher, often times leaving businesses in a precarious position not having access to much-needed capital. When internal efforts to collect on a commercial debt prove unsuccessful, one of the most important steps a business owner can take is to contact a commercial collections agency.

Helping businesses recover past receivables that are long overdue is what a commercial collections agency excels at. Most businesses are unaware of what procedures to take when dealing with outstanding unpaid accounts. A commercial collections agency specializes in those procedures having policies, practices, and systems in place for commercial collections and large debt claims

Considerably more proficient in the debt collection process, a Commercial Agencies employ highly trained, adaptable, and skilled debt collectors to handle the commercial collections for their clients. Agencies are required to do due diligence before contacting the debtor including background checks, corporate structures, skip tracing through non-public database searches, payment histories, and other relevant information and inquiries.

All Local, State, and Federal Regulations must be followed by a Commercial Collections Agency. To do so, many agencies work with local attorneys to ensure their adherence to all regulations and requirements. Continual education is a must for a commercial collections agency to stay informed of any and all new laws and/or changes within the industry; yet another reason businesses should turn to commercial collections services for help in recovering outstanding receivables.

However, though it goes without saying, choosing a reputable and experienced commercial collections agency is key to the success of a business owner when it comes to recovering any unpaid accounts and outstanding debts.

3 Things to look for in a commercial collections agency:

  • Recovery proficiency
  • Professionalism and service
  • Confidence and Trust

Without using the above criteria when choosing a commercial collections agency to recover your outstanding receivables, business owners could find themselves no better off than before