If you are in debt and owe money, you are probably having a few problems with Debt Collectors calling you. Now Debt Collectors love to call at all hours, first thing in the morning, last thing at night and text you in between. The problem, is that this is harassment and it harms individuals, causes stress, anxiety and in some cases, drives people to depression.
Debt collection in the UK is big business. 20m cases, a total of 12.7bn were covered by debt collectors in the UK.
With Debt collectors on commission and earning between 10% and 50% of the money collected, you can understand why your feelings are the last thing on their mind.
The flipside of this, are the number of complaints from distressed victims to the Office of fair Trading (OFT).11,180 complaints last year, compared with 8,961 the previous year. This though, really is a fraction of the real figures and with Payday Loan Companies now entering the frame at an alarming rate, this really is the time to get clued up on your legal rights!
Some of the complaints received where for the following
Individuals threatened with legal action for fictional debts
Large well know corporations, selling the debt to DCA’s and do nothing as the threats and abusive behaviour ensued
Companies not resolving unfair bills and just handing them over falsely to a Debt Collection Company
Credit ratings ruined by unfair debt
Debt collection firms are regulated under the Consumer Credit act and must hold a Consumer Credit licence. Issued by the OFT, who also govern the industry. Under these guidelines, debt collection firms cant pursue a debt if it is disputed. They are banned from contacting you at unreasonable times. Never are they allowed to make threatening statements, pressure you or request unreasonably large installments.
So what can you do ?
Send the letter below off to stop all calls. There are many other letters available to you to stop them all together, reduce or wipe out the debt, depending on individual circumstances and remember to always send recorded delivery so you have proof of sending if they deny receiving it.
Account No: XXXXXXXX
I am writing in relation to the quantity and frequency of telephone calls that I have received from your company, which I deem to be personally harassing. I have verbally requested that these stop, but I am still receiving calls and I now require all further correspondence from your company to be made in writing only. I am of the view that your continued harassment of me by telephone puts you in breach of Section 40 of the Administration of Justice Act 1970, and the Protection from Harassment Act 1997.
If you continue to harass me by telephone, you will also be in breach of the Communications Act (2003) s.127 and I will report you to OFCOM, Trading Standards and The Office of Fair Trading, meaning that you will be liable to a substantial fine. Be advised that any further telephone calls from your company may be recorded and used in evidence and I expect this harassment to cease immediately.