When someone owes you money, you have the right to take measures to get it back. Yet, state and federal laws limit the actions you can take, and if you breach the rules, you could setback your attempts to get a result.
Rules about debt collection exist because some people take things too far. While the movies portray that as some guy called Tony appearing at your door and telling you his boss is not happy, what the law defines as too far is much less dramatic.
3 ways you could break debt collection rules
The law places limits on:
- The channels you can use to contact a debtor
- How often you can contact them
- When and where you can contact them
It also restricts what you can say. If a debtor claims you threatened them, you could land in legal trouble.
Trying to collect a debt yourself is often doomed to failure
If the other party has detailed knowledge of the laws, they may bend them to the limits, causing you more frustration and enticing you into a situation where you breach a law and put your case back.
The most efficient way to collect a debt is often to file a lawsuit. You can seek a garnishment, which is a court order to collect money from the debtor’s bank account or from payments due to them. Or you can place a lien on their property which prevents them from selling it until they pay you.
Getting help to understand how a debtor thinks and what the law says can help you get the money they owe you. Many debtors know how far they can push it. Once they realize you are willing to take legal action, they may pay up to avoid further complications.