Whether it is through anecdotal tales or their portrayal in entertainment media, people often build an impression of debt collection agencies that aren’t far from the truth. While there are numerous protections in place to guard consumers from threatening messages, phone calls at all hours of the night or calls to a workplace, they still have several options available to them.
As times change, regulations must evolve. Consumers are experiencing this as debt collection practices can now take advantage of digital communication.
Where the debt collector might have historically been limited to letters or phone calls, they can now contact consumers through email and text messages. Additionally, the exponential growth in popularity of social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have opened new avenues for communication. Fortunately, there are still protections in place:
- The debt collectors must identify themselves as such
- The debt collector can send you direct messages through a social networking site, but cannot post on your page if it can be seen by the public
- The debt collector must give you the option of opting out of this type of communication method
- All communications must be private
Individuals who face financial turmoil often find themselves at odds with a debt collection agency. These collectors are relentless in their pursuit of payment. When debt collectors become part of your financial tapestry, it might be time to explore bankruptcy as an option for a fresh start. Depending on your situation, you will likely find either Chapter 7 bankruptcy or Chapter 13 bankruptcy fits your needs. It is wise to act quickly, however, as financial trouble will likely continue to worsen as the days go by. Sacrificing one bill to pay another or intentionally missing payments to have the funds to survive is financial peril that no one should have to endure.