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  • Matthew W. Peterson

A Debt Collector Keeps Calling Me. What Should I Do?

Updated: Mar 13

If you're behind on your credit card or mortgage, you can sometimes find yourself getting letters or calls from strange companies you’ve never heard of. They want your money, and they’ll try to coerce you into giving it to them as soon as possible.

Most companies do not collect their own debts. For example, if you owe $2,000 to Chase Credit Cards, then they will probably sell that debt to another company so that other company can collect it. These other companies often pay pennies on the dollar for these debts and are relentless in trying to collect.

What should you do if you get contacted by one of these debt collection companies?

The first thing you should do is call a lawyer. These companies may threaten you, try to scare you, and be very persistent.

Don’t agree to anything until you talk to a lawyer, though. They may be acting illegally, and you may not even owe them anything.

In fact, a Mobile County jury recently awarded a couple $200,000 because a company tried to make a couple pay them for their past-due mortgage, even though the company could not even prove that they owned the couple’s mortgage. There was evidence that the company falsified documents, and they didn’t have a single piece of paperwork to show that they owned the couple’s mortgage.

Like that case, many of these companies’ claims cannot hold up in court. They don’t have any documents from the original creditor to show that they own the debt and refuse to produce any such documents. They claim that you owe them money even though you never signed a contract with them and they can’t even show that someone else sold them your debt.

Worse, the way they tried to collect from you may violate the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act if they harass you, mislead you, or try to embarrass you.

It’s important to call a lawyer if you’ve been contacted by a debt collector. They may be acting illegally, and you may not owe them any money. Not only can you avoid paying them anything, you could win a judgment against them. Give me a call, and let’s get to work.