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How to Deal with Debt Collectors When You Can’t Pay

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Dealing with debt collectors is never fun. In fact, this could be one of those difficult phases of your life as you try to juggle the lack of finances with everyday needs. Before you despair though, there are things you can do to help you, including working with a credit repair company

Although, the main thing to remember is to never ignore debt collections. They won’t go away and they’ll actually get worse and your credit score will keep going down. You don’t just need a good credit score for loans and mortgages. You’ll also need a good score to avoid the courts because there’s always a risk you’ll be sued by your creditors. Even future employers often do a credit check to judge your ability to be organized and stable. We all know we make mistakes but it’s just another one of those things that employers like to verify. So don’t take any chances and go and face your debt collections. 

How to Deal with Debt Collectors when you can’t pay 

  • Check the statute of limitations 
  • Collection Agencies 
  • Negotiate where you can 
  • Beware of debt collection scams

Statute of Limitations 

Ask the debt collector what debt they’re covering and any other details such as amount and dates. This will allow you to check if the statute of limitations has expired and whether you can still be sued. It’s worth knowing where you stand and essentially, creditors can’t sue you after a statute has expired. 

Negotiate 

You might have an opportunity to talk to your lender and try to appeal to their humanity. There is such a thing as a goodwill letter that you can send if you’ve recently suffered from personal trauma or loss. If your previous history has been good then they might consider waiving your negative report this time. Furthermore, you can consider paying off an amount of the debt to appease them. Even if you can’t pay the whole debt then perhaps you can pay off a small amount? Even paying 10% would make them more amenable to removing your bad debt reporting notes. 

Collection Agencies 

If your debt has been around and unpaid for a while then it could be being passed around from agency to agency. This can make things more difficult to negotiate although you can still try of course. Also, collection agencies don’t tend to do handovers so they won’t have the history of the debt. You’ll therefore have to check with each agency every time and even send a debt validation letter to make sure that they are dealing with the right debt. 

Scams 

It’s worth knowing that there are scam debt collectors out there. Some of the key signs include if they are calling you out of hours or if they can’t provide their company information. The perfect test though is if they can give you a phone number for you to call them back on. Clearly, a scam caller won’t have a number to offer you. 

Don’t forget zombie debts. Essentially, scammers often buy debt that has been written off or that is more than 3 years old and then bring it back to life. They basically try to pretend that the debt is valid and that you owe the amount due. This is why enquiring about the debt, dates, and checking the statute of limitations are all important steps. 

How a credit repair company can help you

  • Deals with debt collectors on your behalf 
  • Supports and guides you through any lawsuits 
  • Cleans up your credit score where applicable 

If this all sounds a bit too overwhelming then don’t worry because you can also work with a credit repair company. They’ll manage everything for you, including dealing with the debt collectors and advise you every step of the way. They are highly experienced in working with all the legal language and documentation and will know what details to look out for that could help you. 

In addition, a credit repair company also works with you to clean up your credit score. This is actually something you can do by yourself with the credit bureaus by following their process to dispute anything on your credit report. Although, having someone to guide you when going through these troubling times can be invaluable. 

Final thoughts on Working with a Credit Repair Company 

Dealing with debt collectors is tough. There’s nothing stopping you from doing everything on your own though. However, if you’re at the point where you can’t pay your debts then the chances are that you’re struggling to keep moving forwards. Therefore, why not get the professionals to help you? A credit repair company is designed to deal with all the legal processes of debt such that you don’t have to get involved. They’ll take the emotion out of it and help you get yourself back on your feet. 

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